A mentor can be among the greatest assets a new entrepreneur has access to. In addition to providing a business owner with a firsthand account of being successful, a mentor can set down guidelines, explain policies and procedures, and assist the new entrepreneur in handling the many hats that are being worn by a business owner.
Here are some tips that will help you get the most from your closest business relationships:
- Know why you need a mentor. What are you expecting to gain from the experience? Write down a few of the ideas that come to mind. This will help you pinpoint the purpose of the mentorship.
- Set clear goals. You’ll need to create a sort of roadmap for you and your mentor to follow. This will keep you on track which will prevent you from wasting you or your mentor’s time. It will also allow you to make the most of each and every mentoring session.
- Find the perfect mentor or mentors for your business. Network, network, and network whenever the opportunity exists. You never know when you’ll encounter the perfect mentor or mentors for your business. Make sure to carry business cards with you so that you always encourage others to keep in contact with you. People can refer to them for your phone number, email address or website URL.
- Establish a clear method of communication that is ideal for both parties. Mentors are giving up their time and abilities to help you. For that reason alone, you need to be extremely considerate. Determine what type of schedule and which methods of communication will work best for your mentorship. If things change, make sure to discuss that with your mentor right away.
- Build trust. Your mentor needs to know that you’re applying what you’re learning. They want to see you grow as an entrepreneur. Good, strong relationships take time to develop. Nurture yours and you’ll have someone to call on whenever you have a question in the future.
- Vary the type of activities that you do together. Make the most of your mentor’s knowledge, expertise, and talents by doing a multitude of things together. Don’t put them in a box. Make it a collaborative and fun effort. You’d be amazed at how much your mentor knows but hasn’t shared with you yet.
- Express gratitude for the experience. Not everyone is as fortunate as you are to have access to the mentors that have agreed to work with you and your business. Be grateful for the experience and know that it has the potential to change the entire course of your life. Success is at your reach. Be a lifetime learner by making your mentor feel comfortable, invigorated, and valuable.
You can get the most out of your business mentoring relationships. All you have to do is find someone that inspires you and is willing to work with you and to shadow them for a while. If the person isn’t directly available to help you in person, see if they can meet with you online through Skype or Google Hangouts. If the man or woman in question has books, DVDs or any other type of materials for you to learn from, make sure that you acquire them in advance. This will give you what you need to make the most from your mentor and their program.
There is no limit to the amount of information you can receive from a mentor. Put their experience to good use by making wise business decisions yourself. You’d be surprised how a little advice can go a long way in your business’ collective success.