Mentors are experienced clinicians who provide help, guidance and support to those who are less experienced in an area of practice. Mentors can help to inspire and empower mentees, such as including them in clinical decision-making. [1]

Mentoring in nursing is a familiar concept and all nurses at one time or another will be called upon to mentor a colleague. This may be a more junior nurse or student, or someone new to your clinical area, and it may be a short-term or long-term arrangement.

Mentoring emerged as a strategy to support nurse’s career advancement during the 1970s and since then has grown in the literature as either a formal or informal process. [2]
  1. Connell SE, Yates P, Barrett L. Understanding the optimal learning environment in palliative care. Nurse Educ Today. 2011 Jul;31(5):472-6. Epub 2010 Sep 20.
  2. Mills J, Francis K, Bonner A. Mentoring, clinical supervision and preceptoring: clarifying the conceptual definitions for Australian Rural Nurses. A review of the literature. Rural Remote Health. 2005 Jul-Sep;5(3):410. Epub 2005 Aug 11.

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Last updated 24 August 2018