A mentor can open huge doors and give valuable advice that can help advance your career. This person is your go-to when you need help about networking, your career, or even life. But how do you find this person?
We asked 5 industry experts the question: “How do you go about finding mentors?” These experts come from business, recruitment, networking, and marketing backgrounds. Here are their answers.
Chris Westfall is a keynote speaker, business coach, author, and the US National Elevator Pitch Champion. His strategies have created multi-million dollar results over many industries. He has appeared on CNN, ABC News, NBC, and US News & World Report. He has published several books including Bulletproof Branding, The NEW Elevator Pitch, and The Millennial CEO.
“Listening is a lost art. Mentors are everywhere. While you can learn almost anything from Google, it’s that shared experience that connects all of us, at a human level, and makes a mentor’s perspective valuable.
If you are seeking a mentor, start by really listening – and, in my experience, a listening to discover new experiences, is where real insights start. I would also ask, how do you know if you’ve found the right mentor?
Some questions you should ask:
- Does the mentor have an agenda here?
- What do you hope to gain from your mentor, and how will you know if the relationship was a success?
- Are you listening to discover new experiences? Because even if Bill Gates is your mentor, you still have to bring an open mind (open ears?) to the conversation.”
Matt is the President of Commercial Fleet Financing, Inc., Radio Host on RoadGrit.TV, and Author. Matt founded Commercial Fleet Financing, Inc. which is a three time recipient of Inc. Magazine Top 500/5000 fastest growing companies in America for 2014 and 2015 and many other awards. He is the author of The Grit.
“Its sooooooo easy… Just start asking. 9o% will help you!!!
Truely success people deep down…in their gut…wonder how they got successful. In other words, they are often humble and are very willing to give time and help.
I remember asking author Larry Winget “What would it take for you to be on my radio show?” His answer was “Just ask me.” See? Its that easy.”
Nancy Fox is a High Performance Business & Mental Fitness Coach, Speaker and Author. She is the creator of The Momentum Zone Method (c) that blends brain science techniques and unique business development modeling. She is the author of Network Like A Fox: A Targeted Approach To Building Successful Business Relationships In Person & Online.
“Seeking out a mentor is actually a great networking experience.
There are two reasons:
A) You get to practice excellent networking to find your mentor
B) You get to learn about your mentor/potential mentor’s network
To find the right mentor (and one can have more than one for different purposes) begin with the end goal in mind.
- What is the experience you would like your mentor to have?
- What qualities and character do you want this mentor to have?
- What industry/arena would you like this mentor to be experienced in?
- Who is in your potential mentor’s network?
- What skills?
- What roles would you ultimately like to attain?
Once you are clear about these factors, you can begin researching potential candidates on LinkedIn, professional organizations, and via various companies in the field in which you hope to develop your career.
Once you have identified several candidates as potential mentors, you can reach out to them and openly share:
About your search for a mentor. Ask to have an informational interview about their experience and the process of mentor selection.
In preparation with meeting a potential mentor you will want to prepare 10 astute, probing, open-ended exploratory questions – in order to get to know your potential mentor, determine if he or she is a good mentoring candidate, if there is a good match between the two of you.
Once you have met with a potential mentor candidate and some rapport has been built, you can ask your candidate if they would be open to a mentoring relationship.
The nature of the relationship – how many times a week/month you speak or how frequently you meet – is a completely unique decision between you and your potential mentor.
In essence, these are some essential tips for mentor search and selection.
Not all mentors are created equal so careful research and rapport building is strongly advised. Not all mentees are created equal either – so learning how to put your best foot forward to an ideal mentor is highly recommended.”
Lucas is a SaaS sales and marketing professional. He is the Director of Business Development at WireBuzz and a Founding Member of the Sales Enablement Society. His expertise include anything cloud-based, sales and marketing technology, networking, social media marketing and so much more.
“I typically look for mentors that have specifically accomplished the exact thing I am looking for mentorship on.
More specifically, I try and find those that have taken companies from the same size and industry as the company I am representing.”
Shannon is the Director of Practice Opportunities & Orthodontic Placement Specialist at Bentson Clark & Copple. She helps bridge the gap between clients and canditates using proactive recruitment strategies. She has many certifications including Certified Professional Recruiter (CPR) in High Impact Recruiting, Kolbe Certified Consultant, and many more.
“Find a good Mentor;
First, do not ask a stranger or someone who does not know you well! A great mentor should be someone who inspires you and who already knows you.
This person has seen your potential and hard-work, they know how you think, how you communicate, how you tackle tasks and how you contribute to those around you.
It should be someone who trusts you and believes in you, but, most importantly, it should be someone who is not afraid to give you input and feedback!
Identify and join social media groups and blogs with other young orthodontists to hear their perspectives and voices as a resource in your career.”
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