Transforming Mentoring: What inquiry can bring in a mentoring relationship

Last Updated on November 22, 2022

What is the role of learners’ unique questions in a mentoring relationship? In traditional mentoring, questions from learners don’t really have a role. But mentoring on the 100mentors platform is a different experience for both mentors and learners. For the first time, learners take control of the discussion and build a meaningful and effective relationship with you, the mentors.

Learners always have a reason when they ask a question and your answer may lead them to think of an even “bigger” question. So, here is our question for you: Are you ready to take up this challenge and be part of an inquiry-based mentoring experience? With the 100mentors app, we can make this happen.

In this blog post, we dive into the new “bits and bites” of your experience and describe the steps needed for your mentoring intervention to become a determinant factor on the learners’ inquiry journey. We introduce our new features and share tips so you can find out how the asynchronous and bite-sized questioning-answering interaction on the 100mentors platform is now reaching its “all-time high”.

Nudge learners to “think bigger”

Mentors can now evaluate the learners’ questions toward three core categories:

  1. Critical Thinking: does the learner understand the Topic and attempt to question its limits?
  2. Problem Solving: does the learner explore possible solutions through their question?
  3. Creativity: does the learner show a different and original view of the Topic?

Yes, you read that right! All mentors can not only answer but also evaluate a question. These actions are actually the two sides of the same coin: the evaluation of a learner’s question in a compact and playful way is the first step of your valuable feedback to their inquiry journey. 

💡 Tip: Use the Question Evaluation screen as an incentive for you to reflect on the question before you get your head around the answer you’d like to share.

Sharing your answers and insights is still a valuable part of the process of building a relationship with your mentees! But take a few seconds out of your 100 to comment on their question. For instance, did you find the question efficient enough or even exemplary in some way, so “congratulations to the learner” are in order? Did you find that something was lacking or just slightly emerging so the learner would appreciate a gentle push from your side?

Both your evaluation and your answer should be based on the context of the question, namely the topic in which this exists as well as the learner’s education level. From now on, you have these two pieces of information to help you prompt learners to progress their inquiry journey more efficiently.

💡 Tip: Don’t forget to Bookmark the questions that capture your attention and get ready to let learners know what you think about them.

Keep the discussion going!

The biggest challenge for the mentor who really wants to make a difference in a learner’s life is how to go from question to dialogue. With your two-fold feedback, the evaluation of the learner’s question and your answer, the challenge for you is to provoke a “follow-up question.” With a new question, learners can show that they have reflected on your answer and taken into account your evaluation.

💡 Tip: You will get a Notification when a learner follows up their inquiry because of your feedback so that you can get back to them promptly with a new evaluation and answer.

This is as simple as it sounds! You can get into the app and start evaluating and answering the questions you like and then it’s on the learners’ side to post their follow-up questions. For every single learner that makes progress in their inquiry journey, you can feel more than proud for that. 

The more follow-up questions you receive, the more learners are engaged with your content!

Ultimately, this is the core element of every mentoring relationship and it’s meant to be lasting and progressive – for both sides. Beyond the pride you feel when learners advance their knowledge and skills due to your feedback, you also have the chance to revisit your knowledge and master a few, possibly new, soft skills. 

Circling back to your new mentor journey, it’s never late for a mentor to commit themselves to the next generation by virtually sharing your perspective and prompting learners to keep questioning everything. Log in to the 100mentors app to take full advantage of the new mentoring experience.

Yannis Kourtis is the Mentor Experience Associate at 100mentors. He holds an MA in International Relations and Strategic Studies and has worked as a youth trainer, helping young people to develop life skills beyond the classroom. Yannis is passionate about empowering professionals and academics to leave their legacy by connecting with students worldwide.

1 comments On Transforming Mentoring: What inquiry can bring in a mentoring relationship

  • Helping students achieve their educational goals is a win for everyone, and brings their goals closer to reality. A key, underutilized strategy in reaching this goal is an effective, holistic transfer system that begins when a student enters a specific question to the platform.

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