"It’s important to agree boundaries in the first meeting. It sets the grounds for honesty in your relationship. I’d also suggest that you agree when you will review the relationship."
I think the first meeting with your mentor is about assessing the chemistry of the match. It’s a professional friendship and you need to find out whether you spark off each other and have a rapport.
If you don’t feel your relationship is working after the first session, I don’t think you’d want to pursue it. If that happens, you could talk about what you want to do next at the end of the session or get in touch with CharityComms.
I emailed my mentor to arrange the first meeting within a few days of the introduction because, if you don’t do that, it can ‘slope off’. When we met, we both gave a potted history of our careers and discussed what we cared about.
It’s important to agree boundaries in the first meeting. It sets the grounds for honesty in your relationship.
Decide how often you are going to meet, for how long and where – and who will email to arrange this. I’d also suggest that you agree when you will review the relationship.
We also discussed whether we’d contact each other between meetings in our first session. This meant I knew I could contact my mentor if something happened at work that I wanted to run past her.
It’s useful to set expectations together, to discuss what you want to talk about and what a ‘normal’ meeting looks like. You can over complicate things by bringing in your whole objectives for the year. It’s more helpful to concentrate on one or two things.
I don’t think the first meeting is something to be nervous about. It’s your opportunity to get to know someone in a professional friendship way that you wouldn’t normally get insight from.