Nurse Mentorship Can Boost Confidence and Foster Growth (Podcast)

Mentorship relationship is mutually beneficial for nurses who are committed to career-long learning

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Whether you are a new graduate or experienced nurse, engaging in a mentorship can be transformative.

“We don’t know it all, and the closer you get to the mountain you realize how much more knowledge there is out there to learn,” says Lydia Booher, PhD(c), APRN, ACNS-BC, ONC, a clinical nurse specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General. “If we really want to succeed and grow in life, we need to say, ‘I don’t know enough of that. I need to learn more about it. Whom should I look around and learn from?’”

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In a recent episode of Cleveland Clinic’s Nurse Essentials podcast, Booher discusses her experiences as both a mentor and mentee. She delves into:

  • The symbiotic relationship between mentors and mentees
  • The difference between a mentor and a preceptor
  • What to look for when seeking out a mentor
  • How to decide if you are the right fit to serve as someone’s mentor

Click the podcast player above to listen to the episode now, or read on for a short edited excerpt. Check out more Nurse Essential episodes at or wherever you get your podcasts.

Podcast excerpt

Podcast host Carol Pehotsky, DNP, RN, NEA-BC: What are some things or some questions I should be asking or thinking about [if someone asks me to be their mentor]?

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Booher: I would say, ‘What do you want to achieve? What’s your goal? What is that that stands out about me as a mentor and you think you can draw from? What is the objective of this relationship?’ Because, you know, sometimes people get inspired in the moment, but then if they’re willing to be a mentee, they have to follow through.

It’s not just about taking advice and not acting on it. What makes me a good mentee is whatever was shared with me, I’m willing to apply it. So, that’s what has helped me grow as a professional and as a person. The same thing is true for the mentee.

You can be excited to meet somebody who is just so inspirational. But then when you go to them and say, ‘I would like you to be my mentor,’ then you have to state what are your goals. Do you have any goals? In which areas can I help you? If they don’t draw from you in a specific way then how do you, you know, what do you share with them? So, that’s how it puts the ownership on the mentee as well. It’s not just all on the mentor. So, you sort of get a feeling, ‘Oh, this person is intentional. They really want to grow. They want to draw from me.’