Clear Expectations

Posted on November 26, 2007

Jodi M. Gonzalez (bio) describes her relationship with her mentor, Ellen Frank.


I think the adjustment is that each mentor is different in knowing, but Ellen [Frank] is great, because she’s very clear about what she wants and how you can be a good mentee. And so the writing’s on the wall, you just have to follow it, which is really nice. I think when there’s a lack of clarity about what you should be doing or what the expectations are it’s more difficult.

She’s extremely responsive. If I want to ask her something or have a question, she can be pretty much anywhere in the world and she will either say I can talk now or I can talk in two days or let’s set up a time to talk in a week. And that is extremely helpful, because I don’t feel like a burden. I feel like she wants to be helpful and is responding when she can and she is very clear about that. So that’s great.

She’s also given me very honest feedback about some things I wanted to do and said, "It doesn’t sound like a good idea right now," and that’s just as important actually as pushing me to do things that may be very good ideas.

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Excerpted from interview with researcher at the 2007 International Conference on Bipolar Disorder in Pittsburgh, PA.


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