Even though you may believe your success is a safe thing, you need someone to break it to you – it’s not! Success is a relative thing; one day you are in, the next day you are out. In order to stay in and advance and prosper, you need to constantly work on upgrading your business skills, your work strategy and most importantly – to know which way you are headed.
Do you really think that great names such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Richard Branson did it all on their own? They didn’t. In one interview, even Richard Branson said: “It’s always good to have a helping hand at the start. I wouldn’t have got anywhere in the airline industry without the mentorship of (British airline entrepreneur) Sir Freddie Laker.” See? Therefore, don’t run away from the idea of having someone help you out.
If you have been thinking about getting someone to supervise and advise you, this is the right time to get a mentor. Still, don’t do it just to do it. Have a valid reason why you need one. Here are some reasons that may be a sign you need one.
#1. You are not clear on the direction you are heading in
Doing business of any kind is almost never a safe bet. It can surprise you with both pleasant and unpleasant things, and when the latter happens, you need to find the way to deal with it. But, if you are not sure how to deal with certain things, you need to ask for advice from someone more experienced. This is where you get a mentor. A mentor will help you overcome problems and give you a new perspective and a fresh insight into what can be done.
#2. You don’t feel like you own it
When you are running your own business you often get that little confidence crisis. Also, since not many were as brave as you to start their own thing, you tend to find yourself totally alone in this boat, without having anyone to talk to about ongoing business problems; people either can’t empathize as they don’t relate to you or you don’t have the appropriate audience to talk to about your ideas (after all, you don’t want anyone stealing them). So, opt for a mentor – he/she is the perfect person to talk to as he/she has already experienced all your current troubles and may be of help for any potential problem-solving.
#3. You want to try the easier way
This doesn’t mean you are quitting or that you aren’t capable of doing things yourself. It means you are smart enough to recognize when things could be even better with just a little help from your mentor. Your business may be really young, you may be young and not particularly experiences, so it’s only reasonable you’d want to turn to someone and learn in the process. It’s best to model yourself on people who have succeeded. And if you can have one of them as your mentor – wonderful!
#4. It gets hard to prioritize and set clear goals
It’s not unusual for businessmen to get caught up in so much work that they seem not to be able to find their way out of a situation. If you have a feeling a helping hand would do so much, then having a mentor check up on you from time to time is the best possible thing you can do for your business. Not only will you have a motivation to have something done by an agreed date, but you will also learn from this person in the process – learn how to lessen procrastinating, how to time manage, prioritize projects and the best way to deal with upcoming things.
#5. You strongly want a mentor
Well, pretty obvious. But, there are some ground rules you need to be aware of when opting to work with a mentor.
Know that a mentor isn’t going to do your homework. He’s not there to pick up after you or take on on most of your work. Your relationship needs to be structured, mutually beneficial and respectful.
- Be respectful of your mentor’s time
- Be prepared, consistent and organized
- Have ideas that you’ll present to the mentor. Don’t expect your mentor to come up with solutions
- Plan all mentoring sessions in advance. Don’t leave things to chance
- Have a clear schedule of when you want to do what
- Don’t have a manner of re-scheduling often or canceling on your sessions
- Being light headed and goofy about things is cute when you’re a teenager. Approach your business with seriousness and deliver. Make your mentor proud!
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