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Mentoring Matters: Be One & Get One

Mentoring Matters: Be One & Get One

Whether you’re starting an enterprise of any ilk, reinventing yourself, going through a transition, seeking a transformation, or seeking a job, a mentor can be the most important fundamental key to your success.

You may be older and more seasoned and someone who could be a mentor, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need a mentor for your endeavor as much as any young person would.

Simply put, a mentor is someone experienced enough to offer you insight, methods, ideas, challenge your assumptions and be a sounding board because they have already been through it and have the expertise you need.

Realize you’re probably “young” in whatever effort you’re undertaking. Meaning it’s new to you and you may lack wisdom, knowledge, and insights.

Why Mentoring Matters: Be One & Get One? Keep in mind that any venture is wrought with unexpected challenges. You’re probably very good at many of the skills that are required, but not all of them. You may even be very familiar with aspects but not to the full necessary degree.

There is strength in humility. Being humble enough to realize what you’re good at and what you’re not. Confidence will be gained in having knowledgeable people challenge your ideas and assumptions. Success will be achieved when a mentor saves you from yourself or provides ideas and methods you didn’t even know you needed.

It’s a must-have

Over and over I hear a fundamental, must-have, piece of advice: Whatever your challenge, need, or situation, someone else has already experienced it and overcame it. Why not learn from them? Why not take their perspective? Why not have someone that can challenge your assumptions?

This is why amazing successful people have their own mentors.

“If you ask any successful businessperson, they will always have had a great mentor at some point along the road. If you want success then it takes hard work, hard work and more hard work. But it also takes a little help along the way. If you are determined and enthusiastic then people will support you.”  -Sir Richard Branson

From Virgin Startup: Why do I need a mentor?

  • Get someone independent, confidential, and non-judgmental to listen to you (someone who’s not family or just a friend!)
  • Get someone to support you with a wide range of skills – from finance to marketing
  • Get someone to bounce ideas off of and to help you make important decisions
  • Get someone to give you a push, some confidence, and sharper focus when you need it
  • Get someone to challenge you and give you the assurance that you’re on the right path
  • Get someone to raise your self-awareness – helping you to work more effectively with other people
  • Get someone to help you become better connected with the business world and provide access to the right networks
  • Get someone to ensure you don’t make easily avoidable mistakes

Get the right mentor – no matter what

In fact (ready for this?), consider a much younger person to be one of your mentors.

There are many successful twenty and thirty-something entrepreneurs who have proven success and can bring youthful insight and awareness of new ways and mindsets. Or if you’re looking for work, realize many employers are geared towards younger employees. Learning from and being mentored by “preferred talent” about the workplace and being successfully intergenerational will be critical.

In many ways, millennials are better “wired” for the technology and changing sensibilities in the world and our lives. This insight can be more valuable than you might imagine.

Perhaps there could be a quid pro quo, each of you offering the other mentoring support.

The delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image but giving them the opportunity to create themselves. – Steven Spielberg

I have mentors. In each of my professional endeavors (newsman, content creator, and now New Way Forward) I have sought out mentors to help me speed up my smarts and give me insights that would have been long and difficult in coming (if at all).

But I also gain huge amounts of insight from mentoring. As I have so often heard about mentoring, you often get more than you can ever give.

As I said, mentoring matters: be one & get one.

Be a Master Mind by having a Mastermind partner

A popular offshoot of mentoring is being in a mastermind group or having various mastermind relationships, which can be immensely powerful in providing you with ideas, solutions, and insights while also challenging your false assumptions and tactics.

Oh, and by the way, seriously think about being a mentor yourself. Not only will it be personally rewarding. Again, many mentors find great insights and ideas through helping others.

Mentoring Matters: Be One & Get One

The ultimate point is that whatever you are going through and working to achieve, others have gone through the same thing and achieved the success you are seeking. It would be a tremendous waste and lost opportunity to not tap that.

Further, by helping others by mentoring them, you will find (as I so often have) that you grew, you developed your own insights and awareness by helping others.

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