How To Find The Mentor Who Guides You Like No One Else
In my quest of how to find my own mentor, I found a gazillion articles on the internet. Now which sounds a little ironic given I’m writing one. I realized how important it is to have a person whose advice we actually listen to.
Everyone needs a mentor. So if you think you don’t need any, you are wrong.
This is something entrepreneurs need especially but all they would be looking for is unreliable stuff on the internet. Everyone always start somewhere. Entrepreneurs like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs also did. They knew how important it is to find the mentor you can listen to. Someone you trust and look upto.
A 2012 survey found that entrepreneurs who received mentoring increasing their revenue by an average $47,000 a year.
And the American Psychological Association says that there are a bunch of benefits of mentorship including, career coaching, a larger and wider professional network.
No one human is perfect. But to be able to communicate with someone you admire is really helpful in the long run.
Life is a series of relationships. Make sure you build some good ones.Anonymous
How To Find The Mentor Who Is Right For You
1. Learn the true meaning of mentorship
A mentor is a person or friend who guides a less experienced person by building trust and modeling positive behaviors.
Understand the difference between a mentor and a sponsor.
Mentors give you advice, guides you what path you can consider to take. A sponsor is someone who is capable of giving you a job, raise or even a promotion.
Never expect your mentor to be a sponsor. Although in some cases it could be like that. But make sure to clear it with your sponsor that they would give you their unbiased advice.
Mentors are usually for long term while sponsors are for short-term.
You can have multiple mentors. No one can person can guide you through everything. If one is guiding you through career, the one might guide you through life decisions.
2. Know your goals
You should be clear cut about your goals. Ask yourself these questions:
- What do you want to accomplish professionally in next few months?
- Do you want to stay in your job?
- Are you happy in your current job?
- Where do you want to see yourself in the next 5 years?
Your goals should be SMART:
3. Make a list of the potential Mentors
Now that you have your goals clear, you can enlist the people who would be the right fit to be your mentor. Who is the person whose job you would like to have in the next 10-15 years? But it’s not necessary to have a mentor in the same organization as yours. It makes things pretty easy though.
Do the research. This research will define a lot of things so do it effectively and efficiently.
You can even have a mentor who you think is far from your reach. Most of the people think they are these busy beings who would not care to reply to people like them. They obviously don’t go around becoming everyone’s mentors but if you really show them that you deserve to be their mentee, you can do it.
One thing you have to be absolutely sure of is that person has the expertise of the guidance you are looking for.
4. Reach out to those mentors
Congratulations, you have fought half the battle. Now all you have to do is reach out to them. I know this is the moment you have been frightened of for so long that you are on Internet searching for it right now.
Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as you think it is. So let’s say, you have chosen an entrepreneur who has made it in the entrepreneurial world and are super successful. Since they are that successful, they are obviously difficult to reach out.
This is what everyone else in your field thinks so eventually, no one really asks them. So they might not have as many as applications as you think. Make the move.
Remember to be up-front and strategic forward about your needs and commitment.
Answer these questions in your first mail:
- Be specific about what you like about them and how it would benefit you.
- Be absolutely sincere in your appreciation. No room for flattery. It needs to be real.
- Make them know why talking to them is it worth their time
- Be considerate about their schedule.
And lastly, be prepared to hear no. Not once, buy many times. But don’t give up. Remember to be consistent, you will have the right mentor for you.
5. Build a Relationship
So you have a mentor, you have met them quite a few times. You are starting to build a relationship. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or show that you are overly ambitious. You are ambitious that is why they chose you.
Thank them for their guidance and time and if they seem interested too, set up the next date with clear goals in mind.
Let the relationship grow organically. It should feel relaxed and not contrived.
This is how you will find the mentor right for you to guide you through your journey, entrepreneurial or otherwise. All the best!