2023 AAHA Mentoring Guidelines

Guidelines at a Glance

This is a tough time to be in the veterinary profession, and you want your veterinary team to be as happy, resilient, and fulfilled as possible.

Effective mentoring is key to attracting and retaining veterinary professionals, and you can set your practice apart by making mentorship part of your culture. The 2023 AAHA Mentoring Guidelines show you how to implement effective mentorship strategies to improve your practice’s recruitment and retention and your team’s job satisfaction.

These guidelines answer key questions to help you invest in your team’s professional growth, like:

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What are the different kinds of mentoring models?

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How can mentoring benefit my business?

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How can mentorship programs increase Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB)?

3 Takeaways

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  • Mentorship remains vital at all career stages and may be particularly important during career transition periods, such as when veterinary and veterinary technician students transition into veterinary practice.
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  • Mentoring isn’t the same as coaching, although these concepts are often confused.
    • Coaching = Helps the coached individual achieve a specific goal or mastery of a task.
    • Mentoring = A relationship in which an individual invests personal knowledge, energy, and time to help another individual develop.
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  • Successful mentoring relationships define boundaries, set clear expectations, and establish psychological and physical safety.

2 Actions

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  • Remember you don’t have to reinvent the wheel if you want to launch a mentoring program in your practice. Access the resources in the guidelines to help you get started.
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  • Assess your own readiness to become a mentor/mentee by engaging in self-reflection and clearly defining your goals. The guidelines offer a series of steps on how to initiate mentoring relationships.

1 Thing to Never Forget

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  • Key steps to effective mentoring include thoughtful mentor/mentee selection, access to mentors/mentees, evaluation and continued re-evaluation, and troubleshooting when the relationship isn’t working.

Read the full Guidelines here!

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Meet Beatrice!


Beatrice is our mascot for the 2023 AAHA Mentoring Guidelines, designed by artist Lili Chin.

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Watch this summary of the 2023 AAHA Mentoring Guidelines

The 2023 AAHA Mentoring Guidelines are generously supported by Chewy Health and Merck.

Chewy Health
Merck Animal Health