“What is mentoring all about”? Being Telemachus’ guide and resource person Mentor’s prime role was to “help” the young and unskilled son of Odysseus to become a proficient and self-regulated learner, able to cope with the demands of life. This ‘helping” process (Cox, Bachkirova, & Clutterbuck, 2010) was accomplished through conversation. Mentoring’s typical
characteristic is talk, i.e., the communicative interactive exchange between persons. This exchange is considered to be the vehicle of learning and professional development. Therefore, to tentatively answer our opening question, mentoring is about learning in conversations. For mentoring to be of any help its process (i.e., conversation) and its result (i.e., learning to become a professional) need to be carefully appreciated and scrutinized by mentors – i.e., “reflected upon” – in order to
warrant a mentor’s role and position as a “helping” agent.