Mentors can play a crucial role in who we become as people. A great mentor can offer, through their wisdom and experience, the keys to professional succes. It doesn’t matter whether you are fresh out of school or a high-level professional, just as you wouldn’t go on a wilderness adventure without an experienced guide; wisdom decrees the prudency of seeking advice from trusted, experienced individuals in both our personal and business life. A mentor does more than give counsel. He/she also holds you accountable, keeping you honest and focused on achieving your goals, teaching as well as guiding. A good mentor focuses on the whole you. They want to see you succeed personally and professionally, giving your support and challenging you to reach beyond yourself.
Keys to finding a mentor
• Keep your eyes open: personal mentors are often found through shared hobbies, interests groups, religious affiliations, or volunteer activities. Business mentors can be found within your organization or through business organizations – especially those in a similar field.
• Be careful to seek only those individuals with whom you will feel safe. If you are seeking a business mentor you will need to be free to discuss issues – especially if they involve your job – openly and honestly, without worrying about negative consequences on the job. You also need to have someone whom you can trust to keep your conversations confidential – whether you are seeking a business or a personal mentor.
• Look for individuals who are older and more experienced – someone who has already been there, done that, and can share personal wisdom not only on how to deal with negative situations and avoid pitfalls, but also on how to take the right steps from the beginning.
• Do not look to lateral peers or someone who would have a conflict of interest. For example, it would be hard to for someone to mentor you in your pursuit of a new position if he/she were also applying for the same opening.
• Seek individuals who have exhibited business and personal qualities, which you admire. If you are going to seek their advice, you need to feel comfortable following it. No, a mentor isn’t the king who you must bow down to and obey every word, but don’t take their time if you aren’t going to follow their counsel.
• Begin by asking their advice on simple issues. Build a relationship with an individual before asking them if they are willing to mentor you. Allow them the freedom to say no – if their schedule is already too full or they are uncomfortable guiding you, they aren’t the best fit. You can still continue to build a relationship and enjoy their company.
Most successful people can point to mentors in their life who helped guide the decisions and choices that brought them to where they are today. According to Mentoring City , “a mentoring relationship will provide knowledge, insight, support, guidance, and may even open doors for you. It can open your mind to new ideas and possibilities.” If you don’t have a mentor(s), start looking for one. If you can point to mentors who made a difference in your life, take the time to send them a thank you.
Contact Friday Services. We are a staff of “mentors” who care about you and want to see you succeed in a best-match position.