Hands down, the greatest key to my successes during my early years was finding great mentors – notice I said “great” & not “good.
I was fortunate enough to be mentored by some mega-giants as a young entrepreneur, and you need to do the same – but be careful in who you choose to emulate.
A person you can always rely on to give you an upper hand is incredibly important, but you’ll want to carefully consider how best to choose one.
Like so many things, finding the right mentor begins with first establishing what exactly you’re looking for. If you don’t clearly define this, anyone will do and you’ll soon end up disappointed in your choice and the final results.
Part of this initial process will mean making yourself vulnerable, to some degree. By nature, needing a mentor means admitting you need some help. So don’t let pride get in the way. The more open you can be about your needs and the more vulnerable you’re willing to make yourself in your pursuit, the easier time you’ll have finding a mentor to assist you.
Don’t limit yourself in terms of the places you look for a mentor. Your goals for a mentor may necessitate you choose someone from your own industry. That’s not always the case, though. Thanks to the Internet, you can expand your search to any industry, anywhere on the globe. So don’t allow yourself to settle for a subpar mentor because you weren’t creative enough with your search.
Once you’ve chosen the ideal mentor, contact them and invite them to lunch or some other form of meeting. Explain to them your intentions so they don’t feel ambushed. When you meet, you’ll have plenty of time to elaborate on your needs and what you can offer in return.
After securing a mentor, set up a regular schedule with them to meet. Then be sure to stick to this arrangement and consider moving on if your mentor isn’t able to. Without a concrete schedule, no mentor is going to be much help.
Always keep in mind that your mentor is not a charity you can abuse. While they could be helping you out of the kindness of their hearts, they’re under no obligation to stick it out if they don’t want to. So be sure to show your appreciation often. One of the best ways to do this is by proving you take their lessons to heart and apply them. Let continued growth and success be the form your gratitude takes.
The right mentor can be a force multiplier on your path to success, but you first need to find the right one. By using the above advice, you’ll soon find yourself receiving the help you need.