LLAMA Formal Mentoring Guide

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Mentoring is…

  • "a supportive learning relationship between a caring individual who shares knowledge, experience, and wisdom with another individual who is ready and willing to both develop leadership qualities and partnership skills, as well as to realize a vision benefit from this exchange. The benefits received are professional career path growth and enrichment"
  • a venue to provide benefits to the mentor also

Program details


to facilitate and encourage the professional development of current and emerging library leaders


to encourage and nurture current and future leaders, and to develop and promote outstanding leadership and management practices libraries through a mutually beneficial shared interaction between the mentor and mentee


  • mentors and mentees should be a member of LLAMA in good standing
  • all categories of LLAMA members are involved
  • Mentors are paired with a single mentee per 10-month session
  • 10 month formal commitment extending from the annual meeting to April 30 of each year
  • pairs titled “duos”


  • charged to the committee with assistance from LLAMA Office staff
  • committee members serve as liaisons to the duos in order to provide support
  • chair of the committee acts as coordinator of the program
  • committee members act as council
  • confidentiality is critical

Duos: mentees and mentors

  • participants nominate themselves or must be willing to be nominated
  • mentee candidates are limited to the first 25 that apply (pilot year) and should be first year LLAMA members
  • mentors must have LLAMA expertise
  • mentors volunteer or are chosen by a mentee
  • duos will self match, using LLAMA members’ expertise by looking at potential mentor information profiles provided
  • all participants must submit biographical and career information that will be ALA password protected and accessible to mentees and LLAMA mentoring committee members
  • training will take place at the ALA annual launch

Process content

  • Mentee: career planning, job assistance, shaping careers, and succession planning with an eye on sustainability, legacy, realism, structure, & expectations and an emphasis on professional career – especially at the entry level
  • Mentor: guidance for mentors (see mentor FAQ sheet)

Year One

  • marketed as a pilot program
  • launched at the 2008 ALA annual conference at an orientation/reception
  • duos are determined prior to the 2008 annual conference and meet face to face at the annual conference launch

Evaluation and assessment

  • committee oversees the online distribution and assessment of data collected mid-way through the program as well as a final evaluation survey of mentors and mentees
  • use of forms for the mentors and mentees created by the mentoring committee
  • report will be created by the committee at the end and submitted to the Board at midwinter
  • follow-up sessions with mentors and mentees to discuss progress and challenges at annual conference
  • origination of an e-mail alumni group as well as using mentees to provide alumni assistance in ensuring the success of the program.

Faure, Suzanne. (2000). Introduction to mentoring: IM/IT community. Retrieved November 11, 2007 from the World Wide Web, but site no longer exists.