How Mentors Supercharge Your CareerMar 04, 2020
Everyone Needs a Mentor and Can Be a Mentor
I don’t care what area of life we are talking about, getting advice can help. At my age 65, I still ask for advice, especially in areas in which I have little experience. When I started in wealth management, I actually had two mentors helping me grow, learn and gain wisdom. When I wanted to learn more about doing mission work, I relied on someone 30 years younger. Even my wife makes sure she fills in the gaps when it seems I need some mentoring.
If you want to learn more about how mentors can supercharge your career or how to mentor, read on in this Part #1 of a two-part series on mentorship.
How a Mentor Can & Should Help You
- Identify your blind spots: Entrepreneurs typically have strong egos and very positive outlooks on the prospects of a business. A mentor, especially in a trusted relationship, can spot and tell you about your blind spots. No person has all that it takes to rise in their career or run a business. Advice fills the gaps.
- Overcome obstacles: An experienced and successful person has made mistakes. They have overcome obstacles. She can help you avoid her mistakes and overcome common obstacles to your growth wherever you are in your career.
- Identify and develop the skills for the next level: The mentor can help you identify the skills you will need to thrive and succeed at the next level.
- Set a Career Path: Unless you know where you are headed, it is virtually impossible to get there. Your mentor can help you design a career path that seems to be best suited for God’s design of you. Hopefully, it can expand into a Personal Developmental Plan (see prior blog).
- Become one of your advocates within the organization’s leadership: If a mentor truly sees your potential and invests in you to develop that potential with great responses for you, the mentor will naturally want to show off and recommend you for upcoming job openings. He/she will be able to talk to people you can’t.
- Hold you accountable for better performance: If you commit to doing something with your mentor, you better do it. Accountability can help you get to new places faster. If you don’t do what you say you are going to do when you say you are going to do it, you’ll be dropped like a lead balloon.
- Makes you think: A great mentor does not just give advice. In fact, a mentor should ask you at least two questions for every piece of advice given. You need to learn how to think for yourself since mentors are only with you part of the time. It’s the reason business schools test for thinking skills.
- So much more…
While I’ve been describing mentorship at work, these benefits could help you in the six other basic areas of life, too. Our self-awareness is not 100% accurate, and we need loving people who want us to be successful to help us out. However, we need to be coachable, open to suggestions, and willing to change some behaviors for God’s glory. There is a great deal of wisdom in the Bible about mentorship.
- Proverbs 15:22 - Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.
- Proverbs 19:20 - Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.
Next week’s blog is about how to pick a mentor and more about how to be a good one.
Per research, only 13% of employees are engaged at work. A personalized career plan may help you avoid this statistic and idols at work.