Hello SOTGC community,
Did you know that people who have a mentor earn more money than those who don’t? It’s easy to see why mentoring has been a “buzz word” in many top companies. Employees are being encouraged to seek advice and develop a relationship with a mentor who can help accelerate both their career and their productivity.
Like many people, I knew of mentoring, but I didn’t see the value in it. I was afraid to divulge my failures to anyone at my company. I thought that if I kept my head down and worked through my problems that people would only see my successes. The problem with this strategy is that I didn’t know everything! And, you don’t either! The moment I decided to engage in mentoring, the trajectory of my entire career changed. I started to believe in myself, and my mentor opened my eyes to opportunities that I never could have seen without their help.
There is a difference, however, in getting advice from someone and truly being mentored. Don’t misunderstand; I believe that you should be able to call your mentor informally as issues arise or to celebrate a victory. I also think you should have a personal relationship with your mentor. But, to get the most out of mentoring, you should follow a few ground rules.
- The Mentee (you) should drive the relationship. Send your mentor a monthly outlook invitation for a 30-minute formal call. Send your mentor an agenda before the call so that he or she can prepare. Use bullet points for items you need to work on. During your next call, address where you are on each item.
- Keep an open mind. Your mentor may give you advice that you don’t agree with. Remember that the choice is ultimately yours, but weigh their thoughts heavily.
- Ask your mentor about their network. Your mentor will have been with the company longer than you and should have an extensive network of people to help you. When you have an issue, or when you are looking at career options, ask your mentor who they know with the expertise to help you!
- Keep your appointments. It is important to remember that time with your mentor is gold. Respect their time and keep your appointments. You will thank yourself later!
- Trust your mentor. Your mentor should be a person whom you respect, admire, and trust. Know that what you say in a mentoring conversation stays between you and your mentor. Open up so that you can get the most out of your relationship.
Do you have ideas about mentoring? Continue the conversation with me on Twitter @ryangreenonline and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007156953049