The idea of mentoring has in the past either been the preserve of the aspiring business hopeful or has been a facility offered within a corporate environment. Today, however, I believe that many of us could benefit from mentoring, no matter where we are on our life journey.
I’ll be writing soon about how I distinguish between training, coaching, mentoring and counselling, but at the moment let me just say that for me mentoring relates to guidance obtained from someone who has specific experience of a task or role that you are about to perform.
Two key questions therefore are how do you select a mentor and does that mentor need to be an “expert.”
Selecting a mentor:
- There must be positive chemistry between mentor and mentee
- The mentor must have the time, interest and commitment required
- The mentor must have good quality coaching skills
Does the mentor have to be an “expert”
- The mentor must have recent relevant experience
- The mentor should be significantly ahead of the mentee in their journey
- The mentor should be open, direct and willing to share
So just like my son-in-law in the video above, a mentor does not need to be an “expert,” but rather someone who you trust, who wants to help and who has recent knowledge of the task or tasks you are about to undertake.
Remember mentoring is not all about grey hair and years of experience. Spread your net widely, people are keen to help you, if you just ask.
Good luck in finding and working with the right mentors.