Look to Role Models

Posted on March 30, 2009

Pay attention to how others manage and mentor, suggests Keith A. Trujillo (bio).

 

I'm afraid that typical training doesn't allow you to pick up mentoring skills and pick up the management skills. I think increasingly people are recognizing that as a very important thing that's lacking in the training of individuals, but I think that that's something that many people have to seek out on their own.

And I find myself struggling with that often times, not having had the mentoring at that level of, this is how you go about managing, this is how you go about mentoring. I have to seek out opportunities to where I can be trained in that.

I think that there are workshops and various things like that offered. There's a lot of wonderful books written on the subjects, and you have to turn to other individuals who are successful at that. In fact I think that that's one thing that I really didn't quite realize coming in was just the importance of role models. And when you see somebody that's doing something successful, take advantage of that, talk to them, and try to learn from their experiences.

And I think I first really caught onto that as a graduate student, to where I looked at my professors and saw what they were doing and said, "Ah-ha, they're doing something right over here. I don't want to do it like that; they're doing something wrong." And so I've really tried to look to role models and to model myself after those that were being successful in the ways that I thought were important.

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Excerpted from interview with researcher at the 2008 National Hispanic Science Network on Drug Abuse Conference in Bethesda, MD.

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