Original Publication
Open Access

The Mentee-Driven Approach to Mentoring Relationships and Career Success: Benefits for Mentors and Mentees

Published: September 10, 2015 | 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10201

Included in this publication:

  • Mentee Workshop Instructor's Guide.docx
  • Mentee Workshop Detailed Agenda With Facilitator Talking Points.docx
  • Mentee Workshop Powerpoint Presentation.pptx
  • Mentee Workshop Activities Handout.docx
  • Mentee Workshop Evaluation Tool.docx
  • Mentee Workshop Placards.docx

To view all publication components, extract (i.e., unzip) them from the downloaded .zip file.

Editor's Note: This publication predates our implementation of the Educational Summary Report in 2016 and thus displays a different format than newer publications.


Introduction: Effective mentoring relationships are important contributors to career satisfaction, academic productivity, perceived self-efficacy, and successful networking. They are especially critical during times of transition in one’s career. Unfortunately, such relationships can be difficult to find and challenging to sustain. In recent years, the concept of mentee-driven mentoring relationships has been proposed as a method of improving mentoring relationships. In this workshop, we apply the widely utilized concept of the individualized learning plan to examine and optimize the mentee-driven mentorship. Methods: In small-group discussions, participants reflect on their unique mentoring needs as they transition into the next stage of their careers. Next, participants apply the corporate concept of managing up to their current mentoring relationships. Workshop leaders then introduce the optimal characteristics of mentors as well as the concept of a mentoring mosaic. Participants then create their own mentoring mosaics that describe the depth and breadth of their potential and of existing mentoring networks. With guidance from the workshop facilitators and other small-group discussants, participants then expand their mentoring mosaics by exploring possibilities for untapped mentoring resources (recognizing that mentors can come from the junior, peer, and senior levels). Finally, participants discuss in small groups strategies to overcome several challenging mentoring scenarios, including how to recruit new mentors and maximize the limited time of a mentor. Participants will leave with a better understanding of their roles as mentees and mentors. Results: This workshop has been presented at the 2014 and 2015 Pediatric Academic Societies’ Annual Meetings and at the Association of Pediatric Program Directors’ Annual Spring Meeting in 2013 and 2014. Participants have included pediatric residents, chief residents, fellows, junior faculty, mid-level faculty, and senior-level faculty. Ninety-five percent of participants agreed or strongly agreed that their participation would improve the quality of their mentoring relationships. Discussion: Although we have not collected data on the career outcomes of our workshop participants, literature suggests that mentees who utilize the principles we present will benefit greatly (e.g., attainment of leadership positions, academic promotion, career satisfaction).

Educational Objectives

By the end of this session, learners will be able to:

  1. List two methods in which mentors can facilitate an effective transition to the next stage of their career.
  2. Define the concept of a mentee-driven mentoring relationship and list three strategies that can be used to sustain effective mentoring relationships.
  3. Perform a self-assessment that includes their career goals, strengths, challenges, and mentoring needs.
  4. Define the concept of a mentoring mosaic and list two individuals who should become a part of their mentoring mosaic.

Author Information

  • Mario Cruz, MD: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
  • Darshita Bhatia, MD: Inova Fairfax Hospital
  • Sharon Calaman, MD: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
  • Blair Dickinson, MD, MS: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
  • Benard Dreyer, MD: New York University School of Medicine
  • Mackenzie Frost, MD: University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Southwestern Medical School
  • Maryellen Gusic, MD: Association of American Medical Colleges
  • Leonard Levine, MD: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
  • Elizabeth Maxwell, MD: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
  • Theodore Sectish, MD: Boston Children's Hospital
  • Barry Solomon, MD, MPH: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
  • Janet Serwint, MD: Johns Hopkins Medical Center
  • Nancy Spector, MD: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children

None to report.

None to report.


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Cruz M, Bhatia D, Calaman S, et al. The mentee-driven approach to mentoring relationships and career success: benefits for mentors and mentees. MedEdPORTAL. 2015;11:10201. https://doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10201