BackTable / Urology / Podcast / Episode #99
Mentorship: Making it Work for Everyone
with Dr. James McKiernan
On this episode of BackTable Urology, Dr. Jay Shah (Stanford University) and Dr. James McKiernan (Chair of Urology, Columbia University / New York Presbyterian Hospital) discuss practical tips to develop and maintain successful mentor-mentee relationships in medicine.
BackTable, LLC (Producer). (2023, May 24). Ep. 99 – Mentorship: Making it Work for Everyone [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from https://www.backtable.com
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Dr. James McKiernan
Dr. James MicKiernan is the chair of urology with Columbia University / New York Presbyterian Hospital.
Dr. Jay Shah
Dr. Jay Shah is a urologist and associate professor with the Stanford Medicine Department of Urology in California.
First, Dr. McKiernan explains how he started his mentorship journey, which started when he began to build a research team. He explains that the residents and medical students received advice from him while working on his team. He notes that forced mentor-mentee relationships never work because both sides need to have shared priorities and values. His decision to take on a mentee depends on whether the trainee in question could potentially benefit him and the field of urology as a whole. For a mentee to fulfill these criteria, they must show interest in projects, have willingness to put time into the relationship, and complete all tasks to the best of their ability.
Next, Dr. McKiernan discusses how organizations can develop successful mentorship programs. He suggests building in structured, recurring meetings for both sides to prioritize the relationships. He also notes that hiring faculty members who want to mentor and who prioritize using their protected time for education can greatly increase the ease of establishing a mentorship program. He also discusses the importance of racial and gender diversity in leadership positions, but does not think that they should be barriers to mentorship. Finally, he emphasizes that mentorship meetings are not performance evaluations, as discussions should focus on the future goals and priorities of the mentee.
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