Or in this context, how to help your mentee manage change occurring in their professional and/or personal life. Although change is a constant, some people don’t have the resilience to cope with it and end up withdrawing, getting physically or mentally ill, leaving a job when they can’t afford to – actions that are unhelpful and unhealthy.

There are numerous articles on this topic. For example, this article from the Harvard Business Review (HBR) describes 5 phases of change and offers some suggestions for alleviating people’s anxiety, helping them through resistance, and reaching buy-in. Many of the strategies suggested could be re-contextualised to the mentor assisting their mentee through the 5 phases of change: https://hbr.org/2009/01/helping-employees-cope-with-ch.htm

Here is my take on a step by step strategy for successful individual change management which you can use to assist others (and yourself). ADJUST represents 6 action steps that help a person work through a change process with the intention that by undertaking each action they will gradually feel empowered to become the change-instigator in their life. That is, building their awareness and capacity to manage change by putting in place effective strategies, resulting in their ability to transform who they are (their resilience, attitude towards situations and people, positive thinking, emotions) and how they respond to and deal with change in the future……..

A = Awareness

Being aware that change is a constant and the mentee needs to build resilience to manage this reality

D = Determine

Help the mentee determine their strengths and resourcefulness to prepare and work through change

J = Judgement

The mentee needs to make a judgement about what needs to change (what they need to change) or what is changing, and how they will manage this

U = Utilise

Encourage the mentee to tap into their networks and support people

S = Shift

Support the mentee in shifting their thinking, values and beliefs if this enables them to traverse the change

T = Transform

The mentee creates a new reality for themselves, informed by and as a result of working through the previous 5 steps


Although I refer to these as 6 individual steps, they are equally important for the mentee to work through. Put together, they are a much more powerful tool for managing change. In the next edition of Mentoring News I will share some exercises, activities and templates that you can use to step your mentee through each of the 6 action steps.