Why Should I Have a Mentor?

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Why should I have a mentor? The question we should be asking is “Why don’t I have a mentor?). Especially with today’s more than ever highly competitive workforce.

We have hit huge changes in the commercial world in the last 20 years due to the effects of the internet. And now with COVID taking the world by surprise, the effects it has on businesses globally is astronomical.

Many companies are either closing completely or focusing all their energies on their online presence if they even have one. If they don’t then there is a great chance they will be left behind.

What does this mean for the average worker?

Take a look around and think about that for a moment.

  • We see businesses closing.
  • We see companies asking their employees to work from home, not just during lockdown either.
  • Many companies have discovered the benefits of having their people work remotely. Yes, there are huge benefits.
  • Even schools have discovered the benefits of distance learning.

 

What is this telling us?

Why Should I Have a Mentor - many business closing

Simply put, we need to adapt and change with the times or get left behind.

Unless we adapt and change our way of thinking and working we will be left unemployed and struggling in poverty.

It seems after so many years go by we undergo major changes in our world. Sometimes it’s even a repeat of the past, just on a larger scale.

What do I mean?

> Well, we built a wheel which enabled us to make a cart or wagon which allowed us to travel and transport goods and people more easily.

> We built ships rather than small little boats which enabled us to explore faraway lands, transport food and supplies long distances, even transport people to faraway lands.

> We discovered how to make things with iron and steel so we could make weapons for hunting and protection.

> We discovered the motor engine which allowed us to discover so many ways to make our lives easier, better, faster.

All these discoveries brought on what we know as the Industrial Revolution.

This completely changed the way we worked and lived.

I believe all our recent discoveries with space travel, electronics and the internet are propelling us forward faster than ever into the digital revolution.

Yes, we are still at the beginning of the digital revolution.

Don’t believe me? Look around…

Why Should I Have a Mentor - factory workers

Very young kids are able to use cell phones, tablets and computers with little to no adult assistance. In many cases, the kids are showing the adults how to use them.

This was made very clear to me watching my grandchildren grow and learn.

I will take one of them in particular who at 2 years old was able to use his mother’s tablet and not only find his game but open it and start playing. He was 2, still in diapers and he can work electronics easily and without fear.

The world is changing at such a fast pace it is often mind-boggling.

This is where finding a quality mentor comes in.

Kids instinctively know this. They will learn from anyone around them, everyone is their mentor.

If they see somebody doing something they will watch them, maybe ask questions but they try to learn how to do it as well.

As adults, we need to be like that, we need to start opening our minds to learn again.

But we don’t want to waste our time learning on our own, no, we need to speed it up…

…we need to find somebody who:

  • is doing what we want to do
  • living how we want to live
  • going where we want to go
  • that know something we don’t know

and watch them, learn from them, ask them questions, become a student until we can do it, or go where we want to go, be what we want to be.

So, the question remains, why should I have a mentor?

The simple answer is…

…so I don’t get left behind.

And have the life and career I desire.

What is a mentorWhy Should I Have a Mentor - mentor helping a young entrepreneur with her blogging site

Before we rush out to find a mentor, let’s take a few moments to find out what a mentor is first.

A mentor is a person who acts as a coach or adviser for a less experienced person or mentee. They offer expertise and knowledge to help the mentee reach a new level of success in either their personal or career life.

A mentor is available to offer advice, answer questions and offer support.

Mentors will also protect the interests of their mentees.

Mentees will learn from this relationship often master things they may struggle to learn elsewhere.

The mentor will often give personal examples to help strengthen the lessons.

Mentors frequently also benefit from acting as a trusted adviser.

Types of Mentors

As there are different types of trades, there are a wide variety of mentorship models to choose from.

We will discuss three very popular options to help you decide which is best for you.

Peer Mentors

A peer mentor is a professional colleague who is always there to advise you.

An example would be someone who may share your role when you start at a new company. They teach you about that job and what is expected. You lean on that person for answers to the many questions you will have.

Peer mentors may offer information about job openings within the company or offer advice on company culture.

They may check informally or socially.

Career Mentors

Career mentors are typically in a higher position professionally and serve as career advocates or guides.

They can help you understand where your current career could expand, or progress.

Career mentors are sometimes your managers but they can also be in different departments.

They tend to check in less frequently than peer mentors.

Life Mentors

Life mentors are often at the senior stages of a career and can be based either within or outside of your current company.

Life mentors offer advice during difficult career decisions, such as deciding to leave a job or change careers.

They can be a valuable source of confidential and unbiased information.

Who Needs a Mentor

Isaac Newton once said, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

So, who needs a mentor?

It is my firm opinion that anyone who wants to move forward in their career or life needs a mentor.

I also believe that if you have a business of any kind you also will need a mentor.

How can we do something we have never done if we haven’t been taught how or know that it even exists?Why Should I Have a Mentor - NHL hockey teams playing

A great hockey player doesn’t just happen:

  • he needs to learn from his coach
  • he needs to practice the skills he is taught
  • he needs to watch other great hockey players and follow their strategies
  • watch the professionals and learn their techniques
  • ask questions when something isn’t quite clear

It isn’t going to happen overnight, but with practice in time, he too will be great.

The same is true in business, careers or life.

Find someone who has the results you want and emulate them.

Ask them if they would be willing to mentor you.

Then follow their advice.

What makes a great mentor

A great mentor will prove to be a valuable asset offering resources and tools that may not be readily available due to their experience, access and vantage point.Why Should I Have a Mentor - the bird in the sky learned from it's mother

A great mentor is a perfect example of the proverbial wind beneath my wings.

So let’s take a look at some attributes of a great mentor:

  • they show interest in your success
  • they are vested in your success
  • they are aligned with your best interest
  • they focus on helping you become the best you can be
  • they compliment you rather than compete with you
  • they are neither afraid of nor threatened by your successes

Now that we know what to look for when searching for our mentor let’s take a look at…

 

How to be a great mentee

Mentor-mentee relationships are as different as the individuals that enter into these relationships.

You put forth the effort to find a great mentor so it is important to get the most out of that mentorship.

Here are a few strategies that will help:

  • Show interest and be engaged. Without question, this is one of the best ways to be a good mentee. Ask them about their career and how they got to where they are. Shown a genuine interest in how they succeeded, after all, you want the same results right? You don’t need to take every suggestion but do carefully consider every piece of advice they offer.
  • Be an active participant in the relationship. By choosing to follow their advice you will demonstrate that you value the relationship. It also shows you are serious about your career or personal goals and are taking this personal development seriously. This will make them more interested in guiding you.
  • Be sure to practice not only taking advice but applying it. Willingly accept both constructive criticism and positive feedback. Getting honest feedback from a more advanced professional is extremely beneficial and will benefit you by teaching you the areas you most need to develop further and improve upon. It can also teach you some of your strengths that maybe you didn’t realize were strengths
  • Always be respectful of your mentor’s time. Bring specific questions or topics to discuss at your meetings and don’t reach out more than necessary. Be sure to express respect and gratitude for your mentor and the time they are investing in your success.

How can a mentor help me?

There are several ways a mentor can be of benefit to us.

  • Mentors can coach. Today’s workforce requires us to work smarter rather than harder. A mentor can give us valuable insights into becoming smarter about people, relationships, processes, opportunities and strategies. A mentor’s wise counsel will help us become smarter.
  • Mentors can motivate us by fine-tuning and transforming our vision. They can offer wisdom, ideas, thoughts and they can challenge us to see a bigger picture, have bigger dreams. They prop us up and we must never abuse this as it will eventually open doors to opportunities beyond our current circle.
  • Mentors challenge us and push us to go where we have never been. They don’t let you settle, they keep pushing until you achieve what you thought you couldn’t. They will pat you on the back for your successes and they will teach you to look for the lessons in your failures. Above all, they won’t let you give up.
  • Mentors protect you from missteps. They won’t let you leave the nest until you are ready to fly. Mentors can provide insights on navigating political landmines within organizations, offer advice on how to make sound business decisions and help prevent missteps that could derail your success.
  • Mentors share life lessons. They use the experiences and personal lessons they learned to demonstrate the lessons or ideas they are trying to teach. They use examples from their own life to paint a picture of what is possible. They never give up on you. They never stop believing in you, encouraging you, and investing in you. They assume your vision until it becomes a reality.

 

Final thoughts

We have explored the question ‘Why should I have a mentor?

And as you can see the real question is, “Why don’t I have a Mentor?

How can we expect to get somewhere we have never been if we don’t have the guidance of someone who has already been there.

History has proven that it can take hundreds even thousands of years for the first person to learn something yet merely minutes for someone else to learn it from that first person.

The first thing would be to determine whether a peer mentor, a career mentor or a life mentor is what we need.

Once we figure out what type of mentor we need then we need to seek a good mentor who will be show interest in our success, be vested in our success, be aligned with our best interest, be focused on helping become our best selves, complement us and are not afraid of competing with our success.

When we find that person it is time to ask them if they would be willing to serve as your mentor.

Then it is up to us to be the best mentee we can be by showing interest and genuinely being interested, be an active participant, practice both taking advice and acting upon it, and be respectful of your mentor’s time.

Of course, having more than one type of mentor would again even better.

When I got started with online marketing I didn’t have a clue where to even begin. After a lot of wasted money and time, I came across someone willing to take the time to teach someone new like myself. Fast forward to today and I can say I have more than one mentor. These guys have and continue to teach me about online marketing.

If you’re interested in becoming an online entrepreneur then check out the training program that these two guys share for free. This is the program that works very well for me.

So I ask, do you have a mentor and what type of mentor do you have?

Do you have any tips to contribute to finding a mentor or being a good mentee?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.


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10 thoughts on “Why Should I Have a Mentor?”

  1. You’re absolutely right, Rick. We’re going through another significant revolution that is going to change the way we live completely. It’s happened before, and it’s happening once again. The internet is creating the next big shift in a global paradigm!

    That said, I also agree that finding a mentor who can lead you in is a great idea. In fact, I’ve done something like this myself a few years ago when I discovered the internet business world. I wanted to do it, but I had no idea where to start. In short, I needed a mentor.

    And once I found what I was looking for, things have started to slowly but safely escalate. I managed to create a successful online business without any skills, knowledge, or experience. But I have had a mentor and that was the key!

    Thanks a lot for sharing this article. Your recommendation, Wealthy Affiliate, is indeed one of the best places to get the necessary training and mentorship!

    Ivan

    Reply
    • Thank you Ivan for dropping by and leaving an awesome comment I appreciate it. May I say congrats on finding yourself a good mentor because I know how rear they are? Yes, I agree, Wealthy affiliate has risen to the top of the online marketing chain when it comes to training. They put everything into helping you to succeed and then continue and continue to support you afterwards. It is also important to have a mentor after your success or you just may lose it all without one.

      I wish you all the best with your online business.
      Cheers

      Reply
  2. Hi Richard,

    Great article as usual. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and learnt the difference between the types of mentors. In my opinion, having a mentor is crucial is any aspect of life where you want to improve on or move forward. It’s particularly important to have a mentor when you are trying to grow a business. I have seen move success rates with those who had a some sort of mentorship.
    Interestingly, I have also found some YouTubers’ content in the form of mentorship and I follow them routinely to learn new things about life and financial freedom.

    Reply
    • Thank you Habib I appreciate your supportive words. Yes, having a mentor is vital to your success no matter what your goal is. A mentor can be anyone that has their interest in seeing you succeed and of course, has experience in the direction and level you are heading. It sometimes happens that you may even pass your mentor and have to find another that is at a higher level than the one you had. Sometimes you may even become the mentor of your previous mentor.

      As stated in the article, it is much more difficult to go where you have never been. A mentor can show the steps to get there without guessing. The big trick is trusting your mentor enough to continue on your journey when it takes a long time to get there. And with Wealthy Affiliate, they have 2 guys that have 15 years of experience each with building a successful online business. What impresses me the most with the owners is that they stayed true to their honesty in helping others and today they have over 1.9 million people they trained.

      Thank you for dropping by and leaving your comment Habib, I wish you all the best.
      Cheers

      Reply
  3. I always find it hard to know the difference between a mentor, a trainer, a coach and a teacher. But we certainly need someone who falls in these categories. At the moment I have a business coach. And when I was still a solo entrepreneur in the Netherlands I was part of several master mind groups and was mentored by my slightly elder colleague.

    All these people have had their influence on me and who I am. Once I start making a list of people who had a significant influence (as I sometimes do), there are even more that didn’t have a role as mentor or teacher, but still meant something valuable.

    So yes, I agree with your alteration of the question to “why don’t I have a mentor?”

    Reply
    • Hi Hannie I appreciate you taking the time out to leave an awesome comment. Yes, I agree, it can be very close between a teacher and a mentor. In my experience, a teacher merely teaches you something you are interested in learning however may not have the full interest in seeing where you go with it. Most teachers what to see their students learn of course but some truly take the extra interest and time to see you succeed. A mentor may not even be the one that teaches you, however, are there to guide you in the direction of decision making by asking you questions to help you make a decision.

      Of course, there is no doubt they all make a vital role in seeing you succeed especially if you have the interest in wanting to become something greater than yourself.

      Thank you so much for dropping by and leaving a comment Hannie,
      I wish you all the best
      Take care

      Reply
  4. I cannot agree with you more…taking the time to find and/or invest in an online marketing mentor can have a huge impact on any business, especially if you are new to the world of building a business online, affiliate marketing or digital marketing. A good online marketing mentor will hold you accountable for your actions and check in to ensure that you are staying on track and don’t have any excuses for not achieving what you say you’ll do.

    Reply
    • Thank you for your comment I appreciate it. Yes, when you have a mentor it helps to put the pressure on yourself so it’s harder to give up when things are not going your way or if life gets in the way as it usually does when one is just getting started. This is where the Wealthy Affiliate Training program really shines because not only do they make the lessons short enough to get done in an hour but also have you get involved with others who will point out little things about your article that may need changing for the better. A mentor will know what you are going through and can react in time to help you through it. But in the end, it is still up to the individual to keep working on their business.

      Thanks for dropping by,
      Cheers

      Reply
  5. A mentor is needed indeed in every aspect of life. Why should we try to work something ourselves when someone been there before, tried it and proved it works? You are so right when you have talked about technologies, it reminds me of my niece. She is able to use Ipad almost without any help and she is only 3!
    Everything goes digital and we have to adapt which is really necessary, we live in the digital age. On the other hand, it’s essential to know when to disconnect. Thanks for your input.

    Reply
    • Hi OlaBee, thank you for taking the time to leave a comment on my post. It’s also easier to adapt earlier to give our brain to accept the new technologies because it doesn’t stay the same, it just keeps getting more complex as the years go by. Those that wait until they have to become very frustrated and lost which means getting left even further behind. We have to let the young kids play with these new devices so they adapt to the new technology faster and easier as they grow up.

      As you said, we also have to unplug the kids and ourselves from these devices. I have seen my own kids spend so much time playing games that they want to play all day and night which is not good because it distracts them from the normal day living.

      Thanks for dropping by OlaBee,
      Cheers

      Reply

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