IBS Mentoring Program FAQs - Mentor

IBS Mentoring Program FAQs - For Mentors

What is the IBS Mentoring Program?

The IBS Mentoring Program is a unique opportunity to connect people who are not only in different stages of their careers but also across the world. Our program is designed with the overall goal of connection. We aim to pair an experienced professional with someone who is new to their career or thinking of branching out. In addition, you will have access to a variety of resources designed to help you in your career path.  These include links to useful online articles and other resources and recorded interviews with our members talking about their own career paths.

Is there a fee associated with participating in the Mentoring Program?

The IBS Mentoring Program is a benefit of membership and is available only to members. There is no extra charge to use this resource.

How are Mentors and Mentees matched?

Members must first enroll as a Mentor, Mentee, or both. During the enrollment process, members will select preferences for various demographics to establish their personal criteria.

A registered Mentee will visit the “Find a Mentor” page and fill in their search criteria to search for possible Mentors. The Mentee will click the names of the potential Mentors to view their profiles. Once the Mentee has decided on a Mentor, they will click on the Mentor option to request that person as their Mentor. An e-mail will be sent to the Mentor alerting them that they have been requested to be a Mentor. The Mentor will be able to accept or decline the request. At this stage, it is now up to the paired mentor/mentee to initiate and build the relationship.

A registered Mentor will visit the “Find a Mentee” page and fill in their search criteria to search for possible Mentees. The Mentor will click the names of the potential Mentees to view their profiles. Once the Mentor has decided on a Mentee, they will click on the Mentee option to request that person as their Mentee. An e-mail will be sent to the Mentee alerting them that they have been requested to be a Mentee. The Mentee will be able to accept or decline the request. At this stage, it is now up to the paired mentor/mentee to initiate and build the relationship.

How long does the mentorship relationship last?

After a match has been confirmed by the system, the mentor and mentee can start communicating using their mutually preferred mode of communication.  The first steps will involve communicating via the email system that is built into the IBS website.  Some people may continue to use this, while others may prefer to share their usual work or personal email address.

How will I communicate with my mentor/mentee, and how often will these communications occur? 

When you fill out your profile and sign up for the program, you will answer some questions regarding your preferred mode of communication (email, phone, in person at conferences, etc). We suspect most mentor/mentee pairs will use a combination of different communication modes. There is no set schedule for conversations with mentors and mentees. Those who are paired are free to set their own schedules. However, it is suggested that the first conversation take place no more than seven days following the pairing.

What happens after a match is confirmed?

At the onset of the mentorship relationship, the mentor and mentee will discuss the goals and timeline for the relationship. A reasonable commitment by both parties should be in the 6-to-12-month range. However, the mentor and mentee may partner for a longer or shorter period, dependent upon whether the party’s objectives have been achieved and/or when a party’s situation has changed to warrant a new match.

What results can I expect from the mentorship?

Because mentoring is about human relationships, it can be difficult to quantify or measure with hard data. The IBS’s goal for its mentorship program is that the mentor will serve as a sounding board and advise the mentee on how to develop the skills and knowledge needed to enhance their professional and personal growth and provide a better understanding of the profession.

What happens if my mentor/mentee and I are not compatible in our mentor relationship?

At this time we ask you to direct smaller issues and questions to the Community page of which you are now a member. For larger or sensitive issues please send your questions to the IBO (ibs@biometricsociety.org). Once received, your email will be escalated to our Oversight Committee members. IBS has developed an Oversight Committee for the purpose of IBS Mentor Program oversight. If you are experiencing issues with your mentor match, please contact them immediately.

Is there anyone with whom I might discuss questions?

Open communication is the key to a successful mentor/mentee relationship. Throughout the mentorship, you should be communicating with your mentor/mentee about whether or not you are fulfilling the goals set out at the onset of the relationship.

How can I make the most of my mentoring relationship?

We understand that there are a variety of dynamics that make some relationships work better than others. Both the Mentor and the Mentee have to be comfortable and feel they can establish a rapport with each other in order for the mentorship to be successful.  Should you feel a mentorship pairing is not working, please discuss this with your mentor/mentee and politely end the pairing online using the ‘End Mentorship Pairing’ feature.

Mentor Specific FAQs

How do I become a Mentor?

If you are a member, click here to enroll as a Mentor. You will be instructed to choose your preferences for various demographics and also to complete your member profile.

What is required of me in order to be assigned a mentor?

  1. Be an International Biometric Society member
  2. Complete your online IBS Profile and complete your IBS Mentoring Program profile. Make sure your contact information is up to date, add a recent professional profile picture, expand on your bio and import your education and job history information from LinkedIn. Having a complete and accurate profile is crucial to the success of selection and matching.
  3. Read and agree to our Code of Conduct

How will I know if a Mentee has selected me as their Mentor?

You will receive an e-mail from the Mentee requesting you to be their Mentor. You will be prompted to accept or reject the request.

Is it okay to reject a request?

Who are the Mentees?

What if I’m going to be on vacation or unavailable for a period of time?

Go to the "Mentor Enrollment" page, click the “Mentor Status” link then click on the check-box next to “Temporarily Not Participating.” Doing this will indicate that you are not accepting any Mentee requests at the moment, and your mentoring profile will not be included in a Mentee’s search for a Mentor.  It is your responsibility to communicate your availability to your existing Mentees.

How do I end a mentoring relationship?

If the mentoring relationship is complete, go to the "My Mentoring Relationships" page and mark the relationship as “Completed.”
This option is found by navigating to your Mentor profile, which is found on your Member profile. Navigate to your profile and then select either "My Mentor Profile" from the drop-down box. Your relationships will be listed under the "My Mentor Relationships."

If the mentoring relationship is not working out, please kindly discuss your decision to end the relationship with your Mentee. Go to the "My Mentoring Relationships" page and mark the relationship as “completed.”

What are the expectations for participating Mentors?

We expect that you will fulfill your commitment to developing at least one mentoring relationship. We expect you to respond to initial requests from Mentees in a timely manner, and that you communicate with your Mentees as agreed upon by both you and your Mentees.

How much time will I need to invest as a Mentor?

We recommend that you and your Mentees agree on a schedule that works best for both of you. The most important thing is to discuss your mutual expectations about time and communication at the start of your relationship. Keep in mind that mentoring doesn’t necessarily require large amounts of your time. Even brief phone calls or e-mail exchanges with you can make a big difference to your Mentees. The annual meeting also offers a convenient venue for getting together with your Mentees over coffee or lunch.

What benefits do I receive from the organization if I participate as a Mentor in the program?

All Mentors are volunteers. As an active program participant, you will receive a ribbon identifying you as a Mentor.

Yes, but there should be a good reason to do so. We encourage you to at least have an initial conversation to explore whether the relationship would be mutually fulfilling. If a potential Mentee has misinterpreted information in your profile, you may find him/her to be an inappropriate match. If you want to decline a request, go to the "My Mentoring Relationships" page and check the “decline” button next to the specific request.

Mentees are other members who need you to help support their careers.

Can I have more than one Mentee?

While there is no limit to the number of mentoring relationships you can establish, we recommend that you be judicious in selecting only Mentees who are most suited to learn from your expertise and experience. You can limit the number of Mentee requests you are willing to accept on the Mentoring enrollment page.

How do I find Mentees?

Once you have enrolled as a Mentor, go to the "Find a Mentee" page and select the criteria you want to use for your Mentee search. Click on the Mentees' names to view their profiles. Once you have found a good match, click on the Mentee badge (seen below the Mentee's profile image) to send the Mentee an email request.

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