A mentor is a person whose functions include quite a few responsibilities, the circle of which is not clearly defined, but is determined situationally. So a mentor is a person who has more professional experience than his ward. This may be a manager or just an employee who has more practical experience, as well as an invited person from the side, but he takes on the functions of adjustment, motivation, identifying common weaknesses and developing a strategy for further movement.
It is a tradition to invite a mentor to open a startup, when this person follows not only the preparation, but also the development of the company, gives exclusive advice. However, it is possible to seek advice even in times of crisis for a long-existing enterprise and if there is a desire to expand or change activities. Moreover, mentoring is applied not only in the working environment, spheres of personal and sports development, obtaining various achievements and organizing personal life are open to it.
Who is that
It is impossible to organize a search for a mentor without understanding who it is and what his role is personally in your development. Most often these are people who have a fairly high level of development and achievements in your chosen field or related moments, that they do not have a direct interest in cooperating in order to earn money. They are interested in the perspective or participation in non-standard projects - there are cases when you just start something and people come to you who want to help. This is a kind of challenge to oneself, that is, a person not only helps you to realize your undertakings, but also checks your gut or ability or satisfies an interest.
This does not mean that a professional will spend time resources absolutely free of charge, going into a minus in material and energy costs. Naturally, some designate a fee and provide advisory services, but those for whom the activity of a true vocation does not name the amounts. Accepted at a favorable completion of the project or to reach the stated level, thank for cooperation (with company shares, the provision of free services or one of management positions).
A mentor is necessary in any activity, from the demanding thoroughness of the economy to the creativity of writers and models. This is a person who is able to constantly share experience, speaking as needed in several roles at once - a psychologist, when a person experiences an emotional dead end, a coach, when life planning is necessary, a teacher, if you need to develop certain skills and many others. The main task in such an interaction comes down not only to caution against the most likely mistakes, as many understand the activity of the mentor, but in the ability to build a perspective.
It is thanks to the experience that such a person can set final goals of such magnitudes and directions that his ward cannot even think about at the initial stage. Thus, the opening of a small private bakery suddenly became a restaurant business, and the production of machine tools was reoriented into the creation of cars, the guys who came to the sport due to poor health made a world career of stuntmen and others.
Mentoring can be the main activity or occurs in conjunction with another job. A person can advertise his influence or ask to remain in the shadows, leaving all glory to the student. These parameters are chosen exclusively by the specialist and are not subject to any obligations.
Mentoring itself is not like a formal institution of learning, and accordingly the format of communication and interaction can be arbitrarily eccentric. It even happens that the wards are offended, angry, and consider their gurus irresponsible, strict, angry, psychos, but still remain, since it is these people who can give them knowledge that is inaccessible in other places. No student will tell where to take inspiration from this particular person, how to sell their work, how to negotiate with an illegal grouping and other moments that are either on the verge of lawful actions or require detailed knowledge of individual conditions.
The mentor does not teach the theory, he always immerses the beginning person as deeply as possible into the sphere and culture where a person only enters, explains not only professional rules, but also the features of informal behavior.
Communication in business circles will require completely different skills and accents than getting connections and recognition in a creative get-together. But in the end, the main goal of any mentor is to teach at a certain moment not only to abandon his services, but also to surpass the achievements. The most brilliant athletic trainers were rarely world champions, but they knew very well how to prepare them.
Why do you need a mentor
First, consider the options when the problem of finding a mentor should not rise - these are just two options when a person does not have his own inner need for a mentor (for any reason) and when there is no understanding of what is expected of the mentor, what goals are set.
A mentor is needed when a person has reached a certain level and there is a feeling of a ceiling and the inability to develop further - this applies to both career advancement (having taken the position of head of a department has nowhere to move, but in fact there are still senior management posts) or material support (ability to sell your services for big money).
Sometimes a mentor is needed to systematize your own knowledge and direct existing resources and experience on the right track. Then we are not talking about getting a new one or building a certain concept; rather, the mentor will fulfill the role of cleaning up the internal debris of the individual without adding anything - and when the picture becomes more structured, a breakthrough will occur. In addition, after passing this path, the mentor knows where the biggest obstacles are located, and where unforeseen difficulties can be found and help not so much to overcome them, as to prepare for decent passing.
At a methodological level (this is especially characteristic of mentors by profession from specialized agencies), professional advice can be given. No, this is not a repetition of the training program - the tips will be aimed at familiarizing with new trends, as well as optimizing the mechanisms of work. This person shares not only his own knowledge, realizing that he is not omniscient, but also recommends literature and films, conferences and other teachers, blogs and articles.
The mentor has no prepared answers, and even more so correct views, so if there is a need to draw up a personal plan for achievement, then this is exactly the person. He can combine the functions of a friend and a psychologist, motivating when the strength is over, inspiring, when you want to quit everything. However, a mentor is useless to you, if you only need motivation from him, this is not a gym coach, whose task is to drive your ward - the mentor will not force, you will have to do everything yourself.
You definitely do not need a mentor if you think that this person, using his connections or experience, will help you get what you want by recommending in relevant circles or arranging for an interesting position. No, he can only say in what circles it is necessary to gain authority, and in which company one can get the maximum development of his skills. If you want to become a protege, it is better to look for a relative, not a mentor.
What does the mentor do
Mentor actions are never violent, but he does quite a lot. Naturally, he shares various information that can be useful in both professional and personal life. It is not enough to tell a person about the peculiarities of his activity, the mentor is always looking for mistakes in the personality itself, those traits of character and behavior that prevent a person from developing. Therefore, mentoring is not like learning at the institute, there will have to not only learn the subject, but also to work on yourself. It is important that the mentor actively involves the person in the practical process and is himself at the epicenter of the activity in which he is engaged. If this is travel, then, most likely, the mentor does not sit still, if the creative area, then he holds his exhibitions, if scientific inventions, then he publishes a book of his own work. Manifestations can be different, it is always an active practice.
A mentor often reverses the perception of the person’s world, not allowing him to rest on the same ways and decisions. If you have been asking yourself the same questions for years, and then come to the same answers, the mentor will not give you other solutions, but he will definitely ask you about something that you haven’t thought of asking yourself and others. They slightly or strongly shift the perception, which allows you to go beyond the constraints of development. The important point is that the mentor will not force, but also will not tolerate negligence - this is necessary first of all for you. Therefore, the motivation is quite painful, lowering self-esteem and touching the most important deep aspects of the personality, manifesting itself in severity and punishment until the student starts to move confidently.
Of course, a mentor can introduce a newbie to certain people who can partially help the development of his idea. Yes, and the provision of such contacts is not done to solve all the problems of a beginner in a couple of clicks, but with the desire to help development, and most likely all parties of cooperation will benefit.
In addition to direct contact with the student, the mentor always inspires by example. He does not stop before difficulties, shows the daily application of effort. So sports coaches themselves have a tight schedule of training in the gym, former models are involved in the production of the defile, and economists are starting to develop many startups helping others.
How are mentors found
When people think about where to find a mentor for business or personal development, they immediately concentrate on the field, forgetting about the initial independent work that helps narrow the search. You need to define your questions and set goals for the movement, find the area where development is needed. You cannot approach a person and demand from him to draw up a plan for your personal happiness, this does not happen - therefore, first determine what exactly you need a mentor for.
When an area is selected, your search circle is narrowed considerably, but it’s too early to search directly. It is necessary to determine the issues on which work is most important. Remember that the mentor in your duet is a passive person who can answer, show, warn, but ask questions and implement strategies. After the scope and primary issues are defined, begin to actively appear in the relevant topics of conferences and seminars, go to industry events - look for information everywhere.
When the mentor is not known, but you can already do something for your development. An additional plus is that many successful and experienced people attend just such events, so the chance of dating is higher. In addition, if you meet with a dispute at a meeting, it will have a more favorable effect on cooperation than if you write an e-mail to this person asking for training.
Look for such people not only in real space, but also in social networks and blogs - there people share their thoughts and ideas, interesting events and inspiring achievements. Many are mentors, without even realizing it, for their subscribers. A large amount of decent information and a personal example of such people is quite sufficient for a certain category, in addition, you can always ask some questions in a personal chat.
Redefine your circle of friends, who you admire and why. Let it be individual qualities, but no one says that there should be one mentor. Pull them out for a cup of coffee, and along the way prepare your questions about how to keep calm or save money, where to get an education or what fashion trends this fall. The method of preparing questions will help in scientific and business circles. You can choose several specialists whose achievements you like and ask them all the same question - it’s not the number of opinions that matters, and which one is right, but what answer most would be emotionally close to you. The same course of thought, values, temperament will help to quickly establish a connection and better understand each other, so do not forget about the emotional side when choosing a mentor.
Show your interest in the topic and attentive to the perception of information. Many say that the mentors are themselves when a person is as open as possible to the perception of the new. Such people want to share knowledge and help those interested - this is their own special drive. Do not create a lot of artificial conditions for meeting with your mentor, focus on asking questions of concern and searching for information in all possible places and eventually the interested response will come to your interest.