Do you have a mentor? Did you know a mentor can help you build your brand?
We’ve told you You Are Your Brand more than once here on The Branding Spot. A mentor is just one great way to be the best YOU you can be, and to see success in your work and in your life—and in the YOU component of your brand.
Your mentor can be anyone, but a great mentor is someone who is willing to challenge you to be great. A great mentor inspires you to achieve your goals— so it’s important to choose a mentor who is accomplished, likely someone you admire.
Are You Teachable?
Before you look for a mentor, ask yourself these two questions:
1. Are you teachable and open to criticism?
Sure, most people don’t like to be told they’re wrong. But part of growing your business and your brand is to take ownership of your mistakes, and to understand you have the power to create better outcomes next time. A great mentor will tell you when you’re on the right track, but a great mentor will also point out where you went wrong. Don’t worry, a great mentor will show you how to get back on that right track, even when you’ve fallen off!
2. Are you willing to change whatever is necessary to be successful in your business (and in your brand)?
Change often means sacrifice. What are you willing to give up to accomplish your goals? A great mentor will look at your situation with a clear point of view and tell you exactly what it is you need to change (or what you need to cut out) to move forward.
Finding the RIGHT Mentor—Some Considerations…
It’s important to find the right mentor for your needs, but sometimes that person you really look up to is just too busy or stretched too thin.
Be aware that your mentor must be stable in their life, and willing to lend you a guiding hand.
Does my potential mentor have a balanced work/life schedule?
Is my potential mentor accomplished and well known in their field or industry?
Does my potential mentor really have time to work with me?
A Great Mentor Offers…
A great mentor will highlight your characteristics, talents, and actions to discover traits you never realized existed, or that you weren’t yet able to see. A great mentor will provide an outside, experienced perspective on your business, and will be encouraged by your potential.
Your mentor knows what you have to do to reach that next level in your business. They’ll help you discover exactly what you need to know, inspiring you to take that next step. While change can be uncomfortable, a mentor knows how far to push you – even if you feel like it may be too far at that moment.
A great mentor likely had to deal with the same fears and crises that you struggle with, both now and in the future. You will benefit from an experienced mentor: what seems like a huge wall may be only a temporary roadblock – and your mentor will give you the courage you need to scale it and keep moving forward.
You’ll likely choose your mentor because they’re successful and respected in their field. The longer you stay with a mentor, the more connections you’ll acquire. Loyalty to your mentor is key. If a mentor feels that you’re willing to do what it takes to move forward, then they will naturally connect you with the right people to help you, your business, and your brand be most successful.
Where to Start
Take a look at your life. Is there someone in your life that already fills the role of mentor for you? Oftentimes, you may find that your mentor is right under your nose.
If you can’t think of anyone in particular, consider other accomplished people that you’ve connected with in the past. Perhaps a former boss, or a former professor you particularly admire.
If you must start from scratch, don’t simply approach a person you admire and ask them to be your mentor. A mentor-mentee relationship is complex and often develops over time. Ask yourself what you’re looking for in a mentor first. Then get out there and network until you find someone who clicks with you. You can start by searching on LinkedIn, or by attending networking events that feature attendees you look up to. Start up a conversation and see where it goes.
Boost your business, your brand, and your life—there’s no better time to seek out a mentor, especially with the New Year right around the corner.