Make A Connection That Matters
How to find and keep a professional mentor
Finding and relating with the right mentor that can provide guidance on navigating life’s challenges is fundamental in making a difference in your career. This article highlights a few steps that will assist you find, connect with, and maintain the right person so you can make timely progress in life and career.
The first step is knowing exactly what you want to do. This you can achieve by asking yourself a few simple questions:
1. You need to know what your career goals are.
2. What is the direction of your career.
3. Identify your areas of strengths and weaknesses.
4. What is more important to you.
When you have successfully answered these questions, you will be able to know what characteristics you are seeking in a mentor.
Examine Your Options
Take a close look at your immediate family, friends, and relatives. Your greatest mentor may be much closer than you can even imagine. Ask to know more about their network of friends. They may not be the best match for you but they might know someone that can fill in that space.
After identifying the candidate the next thing to do is some research and know who fits with you exactly. Get to find relevant details like knowing how deep their expertise is, the connections they have in the industry, the career path they took to the position they are today and their definition of success. To get this information, you can easily do that by looking at the individuals profile on a social media platform like Facebook or LinkedIn.
After performing your due diligence, you need to compliment your potential mentor. This can be done by complimenting his career achievements or giving a positive remark about his article or blog post. You would be amazed at what a little flattery can do with respect to paving the way for excellent mentorship.
Show some interest in the career and ambitions of the mentor. This questions can be related to his past achievements or his future goals.
Share information. Sending a piece of information with respect to a position in the industry can start up things for you.
From the onset, make your intentions known. Agree on long and short term goals with your mentor, this will help build a clearer pictures of the relationship objectives. By listing out mutual benefits, you will be establishing a relationship that both parties can benefit from.
Do not ask for to much, do not apply pressure as this is not healthy for the parties involved. Doing this may send a wrong signal to your mentor, thereby causing him to exercise some restraints in dealing with you. Always be appreciative especially when he gives you advice.
Every coin has two sides, always look for ways to reciprocate every gesture. Mentors also desire to learn from you as you desire to learn from them. Share information with them and offer suggestions to contents of their interest. Remain updated on all relevant subjects.
Statistics have revealed that mentorship goes a long way especially in the workplace. Research has revealed that over 95% of mentees are able to apply what they have learnt directly to their careers. 75% of executives admits to the important of mentoring in careers and 71% of fortune 500 companies take advantage of a mentoring program.