The Ultimate Checklist for Being a Good Mentor in Pharma

According to, young adults who are mentored are 130 percent more likely to hold leadership positions in the future. Strong mentors assist is building strong junior-level colleagues – especially in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries.

As with all relationships, the mentor-mentee relationship must be approached with care, encouragement, and openness. Based on internal success at the CRO level, MMS experts have compiled a list of the 20 things that good mentors should do, including:

  • Set expectations for the relationship from day 1
  • Understand that no two mentees are alike, and each should be approached differently
  • Hold regular touch point discussions with the mentee
  • Set your phone down for the meeting and give full attention
  • Genuinely get to know them – personally and professionally
  • Ask about their short- and long-term career goals
  • Hear them out, unbiased – sometimes younger mentees may seem “out there” with their logic; yet take the time to listen
  • Take the initiative to follow up – do not let it be one-sided
  • Ask them open-ended questions to ensure that relevant advice sinks in
  • Provide constructive feedback
  • Share stories on mistakes as much as successes
  • Remember what it meant to be “just starting out”
  • Encourage them to ask all questions, even the “dumb” ones
  • Give them homework – something to dive deeper on
  • Be responsive to follow ups from the mentee
  • Introduce them to someone else – our industry is only so big, after all
  • Celebrate milestones with them
  • Be honest with them
  • Give them more than expected
  • Be patient
  • Lead by example


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