“If you ask any successful business person, they will always have had a great mentor at some point along the road. If you want success, then it takes hard work, hard work and more hard work. But it also takes a little help along the way. If you are determined and enthusiastic, then people will support you.” –Richard Branson
Navigating your career and figuring out how to advance can be quite the daunting task. We could all use some sound advice and guidance. Mentors are one of the most valuable resources you can tap into for just that. A mentor can share with you their skills, expertise, knowledge and professional contacts with you. They can also work alongside you to set career goals, make sound career decisions, offer a fresh perspective and resolve difficult problems.
According to the Harvard Business Review, people with mentors report higher job satisfaction, earn higher salaries and are promoted more frequently. Sounds pretty amazing, right? If you haven’t found yourself a mentor, we’ve got some tips on how to find a mentor who will help you skyrocket your career.
How to Find a Mentor
Define your objective
Be crystal clear about what you are after in searching for a mentor. Are you just looking for specific, quick advice for a project that you’re struggling with right now? Do you want a mentor who is supportive and available a few times a month to help guide your career long-term? Define your objective before you start searching for a mentor.
Reach out to business leaders you admire
Simply find someone who is running a business in the industry you are hoping to enter or advance in and just ask! Reach out and ask if he or she would be willing to spare some time to give you advice. It can really be that simple. Step out of your comfort zone and don’t be shy. People will typically be flattered by a request for advice. They were once in your shoes and they probably sought out a mentor at some point themselves.
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Go to inustry events
There are start-up events happening in almost every city across the entire country. Try checking out Eventbrite or MeetUp and search for “entrepreneurship” or something relevant to your industry to find an endless list of upcoming events. Attending these events is an amazing way to learn about your industry from the experts and you can network with all of the people you meet there. And don’t rule out reaching out to the speaker who inspired you or who was super knowledgeable—you may just find yourself a mentor in them!
Choose someone with a different perspective
In order to grow as a person and in your career, find a mentor who will challenge your thinking. This person should show you different ways to approach a problem, or bring up an additional or potential roadblock you never knew existed. Having a mentor with another point of view will help your personal brand and decision-making process immensely.
Seek out more than one mentor
It’s important to take on a board of advisors to help you with the many aspects of your career. There is no one person with all the answers. Select of handful of different mentors with various experiences and backgrounds. Here are 5 types of mentors we think that everyone should have.
A guiding hand and some words of wisdom from a mentor are gifts worth their weight in gold.
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