The WICT Network: Midwest Mentor Program

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The WICT Network: Midwest Mentoring Program is designed to provide career and personal development opportunities for women in the telecommunications industry. While the program is a one-on-one pairing model, other models such as several mentees to a mentor or several mentors to a mentee may be utilized. This program is in place to support both mentees and mentors in achieving goals. Participation in the mentoring program is not an assurance of promotional opportunities. However, it provides an excellent framework for career development.

Mentoring Program Objectives/Goals

The mentoring program is designed to help bring self-awareness of professional and personal skills and talents that may be undeveloped at this time. The mentor helps bring these talents to life, or in some cases helps the individual decide on realistic expectations, next steps and/or potential opportunities.

The program is designed with the following goals in mind:

  1. Provide the opportunity to develop a mentoring relationship that will inspire personal and professional success.
  2. Allow the mentee to gain broader perspectives about her field of choice, values, norms, expectations, and behaviors, and enhance the ability to make productive career decisions.
  3. Enhance professional networking opportunities for mentors and mentees.
  4. Increase morale and job satisfaction.
  5. Aid in retention of employees in the industry.

Mentoring Roles and Responsibilities

Mentor role: To be a professional role model providing guidance for the mentee to achieve professional and personal goals. The best mentors are successful people whose joy for work and life is infectious and inspiring to those around them.

Ideal Characteristics:

  • Demonstrated interest and ability to facilitate growth of others.
  • Ability to build supportive relationships.
  • Established networks.
  • Variety of professional experiences.


  • Understand that the mentee is responsible for her career development.
  • Make yourself available for regularly scheduled meetings with your mentee.
  • Work with the mentee to identify developmental objectives that are specific, measurable and achievable.
  • Help the mentee create a personal plan for success.
  • Listen proactively and maintain open communication.
  • Share candid concerns and encouraging feedback to support the mentee’s journey.
  • Counsel the mentee on industry insights you have gained through your experience.
  • Assist the mentee and her manager by providing direction and opportunity for challenging assignments to benefit the mentee, only upon agreement by all parties.
  • Support the mentee in establishing a network of resources at all position levels by providing introductions to others who can help with advice, knowledge, etc.
  • Share guidance, knowledge, experiences and encouragement that assist the mentee in professional growth and development.
  • Honor commitments and respect confidentiality on information shared by the mentee.
  • Contact the mentoring chair with questions or concerns.

Mentee Roles and Responsibilities

Mentee Role: To be proactive in her own career development with the support, guidance and encouragement of a mentor.

Ideal Characteristics:

  • Demonstrated past performance capabilities.
  • Recognized high potential and credibility.
  • Enthusiasm, motivation and desire to ensure the success of the corporation.
  • Commitment to shoulder greater responsibility.
  • Dedication to continuous learning and self-development.


  • Actively participate in the program.
  • With mentor’s assistance, create and define goals of the relationship.
  • Share professional information and experiences, successes or failures.
  • Initiate appointments and maintain regular, open communication with the mentor.
  • Develop growth goals and a plan for achieving them, with the support of the mentor.
  • Demonstrate commitment by following through with the guidance and counsel of the mentor.
  • Build an internal and external network to support professional and personal goals.
  • Honor commitments and respect confidentiality on information shared by the mentee.
  • Provide feedback to the mentor on what’s working.

PLEASE NOTE: Joining a mentoring program does not, in any way, imply dissatisfaction with the role and/or operating style of the mentee’s manager. The mentor’s role is to supplement the support provided by the manager.

Program Information

  • The mentee is paired with a mentor based on specific criteria (goal, experience, etc.) by the mentoring chair/committee.
  • The program is designed to be strictly voluntary.
  • The program design is based on a one-on-one pairing model.
  • The mentoring relationship is primarily mentee driven.
  • Qualified mentors are those who have a strong belief in the merits of a mentoring relationship. Mentors should be effective communicators capable of delivering balanced feedback.
  • Qualified mentees are those who are proactive in the pursuit of their career development.
  • Roles, responsibilities, and expectations should be clearly defined by both parties at the start of the relationship.
  • Mentees will not be paired with their supervisors.
  • The program is designed for women mentees. Men and women are both eligible to participate as mentors.

Mentors and mentees are first required to complete an application forms. All information will be kept confidential and used to match mentors to mentees with similar interests, and where a mentor can offer guidance in the mentee’s areas of need.

The mentor and mentee can develop their own schedule of meetings. It is recommended that meetings should take place at least once per month. Phone calls and email consultation can take place more frequently, depending upon the mutual needs of the parties involved.

The mentoring chair will consult with the mentor and mentee to assess and support the development and status of the relationship.

The mentoring relationship is assumed to last 1 year, however, this can be extended upon agreement of both parties.