Mentorship: a two-way street



Throughout our orthopaedic training and subsequent careers, we interact with many teachers and colleagues who help us develop our surgical skills and orthopaedic knowledge. Some may become personal role models, from whom we learn more than the basics of orthopaedics. They help to mould our orthopaedic ‘character’, influencing among other aspects, our bedside manner, compassion towards patients and their families, how we interact with colleagues and how we maintain a healthy work–family balance. Mulcahey et al. clarified these concepts by highlighting that a teacher shares knowledge with a learner while a role model demonstrates behaviour patterns in a passive manner and without conscious effort.1 Although the ability to teach and set a positive example as a role model are considered crucial characteristics of a mentor, these roles should not be confused with mentorship.

Author Biography

Cameron M Anley, Stellenbosch University

Orthopaedic Consultant, Division of Orthopaedics, Tygerberg Hospital, Stellenbosch University, Cape Town, South Africa