Huffington Post came out with an article called “The Magic of Mentoring,” which covers mentoring in business and how it can make the difference between success and failure. The author, Bev James, opens with one sentence:

Mentoring isn’t magic but its effects can be magical.

This powerful statement isn’t sugarcoated. Mentoring isn’t easy, but done right, it sets companies and people apart from others. In just a few sentences, the author shows that the art of mentoring is universal. Its characteristics can be applied in schools, businesses, relationships and more. At Teach One to Lead One, we appreciate a good article on the subject for a couple of reasons. First, most everything the author describes about mentoring is true. And she makes the word “magic” a fun part of the explanation. MAGIC means matching, agreeing, goal setting, integrity and honesty, and confidence.

Below we’ve taken her version and applied it to mentoring with kids:

Matching the right person to the right kid is crucial for success. The mentor should feel like his or her skills and experience match what a kid needs in a mentor. With gentle guidance, support and the right questions, a mentor can change a life.

Agreeing on the best way to work together using the T1L1 program as a guide is huge in planning the best course of action for progress. Through communication and a little fun, mentors and kids decide on what’s realistic and achievable in a given timeline. If both the mentor and the kid being mentored agree, the path to success should be clear.

Goal setting is huge for kids having trouble in life. Goals put things in perspective by dividing the simple and hard into categories, while also outlining the steps it will take to achieve a bigger goal. This is the step in the process where kids really shine because they can see the future and know how to get there.

Integrity and honesty are T1L1 principles that help establish trust and respect between a mentor and a kid. Being open to new ideas and identifying risks will help the relationship grow. James ends the section with, “After all, success without integrity is failure.” We agree.

Confidence helps at-risk kids gain the skills they need to go from good to great. Teaching kids that it’s okay to ask questions, reach out for help or admit failure is what they need to build confidence. Putting them in situations that build character and life experiences is important for growth and development.

Mentors, what do you think of MAGIC mentoring?

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