I see Mentoring as guiding, helping and advising a client with their own management process regarding their personal change and development – albeit in a specified area. This would tend to follow on from a period of technical or performance specific coaching and is designed to just embed into place all the new and changed habits and routines. I like to draw the analogy with learning to ride a bike. We’ve worked on the learning and conditioning – now I’m holding the saddle in a steady, upright position for the client whilst they get comfortable with how they are performing their bike riding. After a period of riding we’ll examine their progress at putting their skills into action and discuss any changes and adjustments they might want to make. This will be akin to my letting go of the saddle, and allowing them to go “solo”. Once going it alone, I will still be there in the background for them of course – and they can check in with me at any time. I also do quite a lot of mentoring for clients after they have made changes of a therapeutic nature, by just being there for them. I’d characterise this as being in the form of an email, a quick phone or Skype call, or even a message on Facebook or text. It is usually just a reassurance, a cost-free safety net, for them on their journey. For a more formalised mentoring programme, we would establish a mutual time-frame of short meetings. Out of these might emerge the need for revisiting some process coaching – which could either be done at the time, or by making an additional appointment.