In this month’s issue of The Costco Connection, I learned that January is National Mentoring Month. We have discussed mentors in the past, how important and necessary they are for all of us, and how rewarding it is to be a mentor to others. I would bet that all of us have been mentored, been a mentor, or both in our lives.
Therefore, in the spirit of Gratitude Marketing, I believe that we all should take another look at mentoring and how we might assist others in their quest to build their life and business. It does not matter if an individual is working for a large corporation as a staff member or is an entrepreneur, mentors can assist anyone. Mentors can also help students in finding their way through school into the world of business.
Mentors can help employers deal with employee relations, the marketing of products or services, even deciding what types of products or services they should offer. Mentors can guide the head of a business or the employee who is at the lowest of the organization chart. Many employers have lost the way to relate to employees, have difficulty attracting or locating the “right” employees, or retaining the employees that they have. Mentors may assist with all of these situations.
What if someone is finding difficulty in starting their business career, perhaps deciding what courses, or even schools, will help them achieve their dreams? What if someone is having problems defining their dreams in their life? Mentors may have the answer to these problems. Mentors do not tell anyone what to do, providing all the answers from a playbook. They can, however, relate experiences and other data that assists the other person decide what they need to do in their life.
Can mentors help others develop their talents outside the business world? Anyone can benefit from mentors who might assist them improve their personal lives. We have discussed in the past how it is impossible for anyone to separate their personal and business lives. Mentors will influence the personal life of someone just they can do the same for someone’s business life.
Mentors are available to help others who are willing to listen and learn. Open, honest conversation is the basis of a great mentoring relationship. If we are going to mentor someone in their business or in their life, we must be committed. We must be the mentor that we ourselves would want.
Mentors must challenge their charges and encourage them to reach further than they would test themselves if left to their own devices. We should look for mentors, and be mentors, who assist and push others to rise beyond their own expectations. Mentors must also dare their charges to try new procedures and test the market with their own ideas and “what if” thoughts.