What is a Mentor?

A mentor is an individual with more experience in both business and life, who may help an entrepreneur hone his or her powers and advise them on the correct route to navigate these fresh challenges. A mentor may be a boon to an entrepreneur in a broad array of scenarios, whether they supply pointers on business techniques, bolster your networking crusades or act as confidantes when your work-life balance becomes out of whack. However the first thing you need to know when seeking out a mentor is what you are seeking from the arrangement.

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What having a personal trainer is to your body, having a coach may be to your mind. Utilizing a coach appears to be the latest way for some individuals to get ahead in today’s varied business world.

Which type of mentor is right for you?

Ascertaining what type of help you need is an imperative first step in the mentor hunt.
To begin the search, you could make a list and include the following:

  • Do you want some-one who is a good listner?
  • Do you need some-one who is socially connected?
  • Do you need some-one who’s expertise is in Social Media & Marketing?
  • Do you need some-one to help you with your people skills?

etc, etc.

Ideally you may find a mentor with all of these characters, but the reality is you might have to make a few compromises. After you count the characteristics you are looking for in a mentor, split up that list into wants and needs.

The Interview Stage

Once you have fine tuned your list of requirements you then need to find your ideal candidate. You could arrange a series of informal Skype interviews with a range of your potential mentors, compare each of these against your list of requirements. This way you do not get blown away by chemistry and you remain focused on your business or personal reasons for needing a mentor. By reviewing your notes and the Skype conversations you can judge both the qualitative and quantitative properties of each of your likely mentors. Bear in mind that it might be advantageous to have more than one mentor.

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If you think that you might take up too much of your mentor’s time then several mentors might be the answer. The benefits of having multiple mentors is that you are able to utilize each of there individual specialities, however, if you can arrange to meet using Skype or Team viewer you can then benefit from their collective knowledge and use these sessions to brainstorm either new ideas or solutions to current problems.

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How to discover a mentor:

Before casting your net far and wide, it may be simpler to look closer to home.
You can begin with your loved ones or close friends. Occasionally, you may feel it of more benefit to reach out to individuals you trust.
If you have a close friend who you can utilize and can ask:-

what do you feel about this?

If they feel there is a good match then take advantage of your immediate network.  If however, no-one jumps out as a potential mentor, then you need to expand your search to your broader network of business contacts or social contacts.

Asking for A Huge Commitment Of Virtual Stranger – How to?

The opening move is to get hold of your network of contacts. A positive word from a common acquaintance may go a long way toward getting a mentoring relationship off to a great start. Additionally, you should not pick out a mentor overnight, which implies you ought to keep your antenna poised to pick up on likely mentors at conferences, trade shows, and networking events. Meeting with a future mentor in person helps construct a rapport and you may wish to wait till that connection develops. Develop the relationship before asking the question. Unfortunately, none of the individuals in your network seem like a great fit for you. So what now? Begin doing a little research. Profiles of business owners in magazines and papers may key you in to somebody who equals your style. But when you have identified a few likely prospects, you need to move forward delicately. Discover as much as you are able to about the likely mentor and attempt to schedule a brief interview by telephone saying you have a few particular questions or simply generally wish to pick their brain. You need to make it as simple for them to help you as possible. Provide full contact information, reach out on Social Media and if required arrange to meet in person.

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If the initial contact goes well, you may broach the idea of speaking once again whether by telephone or in person. Over time, if they feel receptive, you may bring up the idea of a more conventional mentoring relationship with more particular parameters and goals.

What About Rivalry?

Think about the rivalry – Well, not your direct rivalry. For instance, if you are in retail selling windsocks, somebody selling kites is not in direct rivalry with you but may still have a few insights into the outdoor product industry.  If you have a brick and mortar store, you may even call somebody who does precisely what you do in a far away location, suppose you are in New York City and they are in Arizona.  However the web is increasingly placing retailers even on different continents in rivalry, so step lightly. A different hint would be to seek out counsel from somebody at a business larger than yours who may be less likely to view you as a rival.

Finding somebody who matches your personal flair?

Tap your field – your suppliers, your local chamber of commerce, and relevant trade publishings are great places to come by knowledgeable individuals and are great sources for likely mentors. Look for a mentor the same way that individuals seek medical professionals, seek recommendations. Great informal mentorships are cultivated bit by bit and may frequently last for years.

Mentor or Consultant?

If you have a great idea you need to get of the ground quickly, you may have to consider paying to bring in a consultant to give you the fast jolt of expertise? Only you can determine the qualities you require in a mentor or coach.

2 Reasons Individuals Seek Coaches

1. A few individuals look for coaches to help them discover a balance between their personal and professional lives.

2. Other people want coaches to help them get more productive in their business or help step-up their business.

Individuals at all stages of their professional evolution need coaches to help them. CEO’s often utilize coaches to bounce ideas around, entrepreneurs utilize their coach to help them think strategically about the business, and coaches help other people sort out career decisions. Individuals are not looking for speedy answers any longer. They are seeking ways to produce lasting change. The traditional consultant does not truly bring about lasting change.

Coaching is the next evolutionary stage of consulting.

Coaching is a blend of business, finance, psychology, philosophy, transformation and spirituality. It helps individuals get more of what they wish out of life, whether it’s business success, fiscal independence, academic excellence, personal success, physical wellness, relationships or career planning. Coaches are soundboards, support systems, cheerleaders and team mates all rolled into one. Bottom line; the job of a coach is helping other people realize their total potential. Coaches utilize questioning skills, listening and motivational strategies to help individuals build the skills, knowledge and confidence required to better their professional and personal lives. A coach is a collaborative partner who helps you achieve things. Coaching is not a replacement for personal responsibility and personal alteration or choice.

You require a coach if:

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  • Your business is not performing as well as it could
  • You feel you are working harder for less
  • Your business is doing well and you need help to take it to the next level
  • You are not able lead your staff effectively
  • You need advice on downsizing/upsizing your company
  • You think your business is approaching a plateau
  • You are not good at making strategic decisions

A coach supplies you with a place to get a little perspective.

A coach is somebody who is not caught up in all the daily stuff and who may easily see the big picture.


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