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'How do I get my mentor to like me?'


Can you advise this student nurse?

”I just started on a new placement with a new mentor, and I don’t think she likes me very much.

“Every time I ask a question she seems really annoyed, even when she’s showing me something and I need clarification. I try not to ask too many, but then I get confused and it makes her even more irritable.

“It’s only been about a week but I’m already feeling very discouraged. I don’t want to ask for a transfer, I just want to get along better with my current mentor, but I have no idea how!

”Should I compliment her methods, or volunteer to do extra work? I’ve asked some of her other students and they say they get along fine. I’m only a first-year so I do not have much experience in this department but I don’t think this is a very typical thing, is it?

“In any case, it’s taking a massive toll on me and I’m starting to dread going in to work. What can I do to make my mentor like me more? Or how can I make myself stop caring whether or not she likes me and just ask what I need to know anyway?”

Please use the comments section below to share your advice

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Readers' comments (7)

  • Sorry to hear you are already feeling discouraged.

    The relationship between you and your mentor obviously needs to improve otherwise you're not going to enjoy the placement or indeed learn very much. I would suggest that you book some time with her and discuss how things can improve. Gently let her know that she comes across as annoyed or irritated when you seek clarification or when you are confused about something. Better this than you making mistakes; and besides she might not be aware how she is coming across to you. Remind her that you are a first year student and you need to gain confidence, particularly in relation to the work that has to be achieved. Give your mentor the opportunity to draw up a joint plan so that you can move forward. If this is taking its toll on you then don't let it go on any longer. Discuss with your link lecturer from uni and also if necessary with the manager at the placement.

    Don't crawl around anyone. You can't make people like you. Some mentors don't particularly want to undertake this role but they still need to show professionalism and respect. Nursing involves research and sharing knowledge, your mentor should be supportive. The placements do receive payment for having students so don't be afraid to speak up.

    Good luck with your studies.

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  • Are mentor's monitored? Mentors are required to fulfill the basic definition which is, to help another. It be be a requirement for RCN or the NMC, to monitor professionalism? Are they as caring as reflected in the Code of Ethics for this role? A mentor should be an honour and a role where one takes an oath.

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  • I think the advice given above is bang on the money. As a student nurse, you have a unique opportunity to help develop your mentors self-awareness, as our sense of self comes in part from the feedback we receive from others.
    There is of course the possibility that your mentor just doesn't like you. That's a bit difficult but every situation is a learning opportunity,you just got to work it out.

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  • It is imperative that your Assessment is signed. Please talk to your university tutors and explain the situation to them. They will visit your placement and talk to your mentor. Ask them to visit.

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  • professionalism..they dont have to like you but they do have to uphold to responsibilities and behave professionally. otherwise you need to report this.

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  • I feel for you, in all of my 15 placements I had one mentor who truely hated me. she was an awful bully. Please don't take it to heart. some people ARE just horrible, her behaviour shouldn't be seen as a reflection on your worth but hers instead. If you know that everyone else on placement and all your other mentors have got on with you fine, that is also a good indication of where the problem lies. In my experience, I just miserably survived the placement and was out of there like a shot, however in retrospect wish I would have told someone about her behaviour on leaving.

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  • I feel for u I really do. The relationship between you and your mentor is so important ! The mentor can be the difference between passing and failing the course .
    This needs addressing urgently . You shouldn't feel afraid to ask questions for worrying about annoying your mentor ! That is what they are there for !
    I think you need a meeting between yourself and them and perhaps have your university tutor present for your support . If this isn't addressed now it will just get worse .... Believe me when I say.This is your future this person is playing with .

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