What has been the most difficult mentoring challenge so far? Why?
I believe that the most difficult mentoring challenge we (my mentor and I) have faced so far is our interests and specialties. I say this because although Ms. Gilder is able help me use photoshop and navigate its tools, she cannot assist me when I do something like using a drawing tablet – something she is not too familiar with. So, the questions I ask generally must be how to use the tools and how they work rather than asking her directly how to do something. This means we must use our noggins to figure out together what the best tools and method would be to approach my question.
What is working well? Why?
I think that we are both able to get to the point straight away. We discuss what I want to learn, how get started learning that, then she gives me a mini lesson, and I practice what I learned. This has been working great and I am given a basis to work off until our next meeting a week (or two) later. This has been a good thing because – in my opinion – it gives me a perfect balance of autonomy and mentorship. I am given the tools necessary to achieve my desires, but they are not directly handed to me. That, would be uninteresting.
What could be working better? How can you make sure this happens?
Something that I think we could do better is communication outside our meetings, as we haven’t done much talking other than in our meetings. An effective way I can assure this is to continuously think about the meetings and questions I have (more than I currently am). This will mean that I will have more ideas and questions to ask during the week, which I know I won’t be able to put off. I could even write down questions if I don’t have enough time to write down an email.
Having answered the questions, I would like to give one example of what I learned during our past meeting: