Are you thinking of how to find a business mentor? Do you find it difficult? It can be quite challenging, right?
Having access to a business mentor who is willing to advise, lead, support, and monitor you right to the level you want to attain in business can oftentimes be difficult.
Since we know how necessary having a mentor is in the normal world and how difficult it is to find one, we have compiled some guidelines to help you find a business mentor.
But first, we need to discuss the concept of mentorship by considering who a mentor is.
Who Is A Business Mentor? – How to Find a Business Mentor
A mentor is a facilitator, sponsor, coach, adviser, and counselor.
Therefore, a business mentor guides, facilitates, sponsors, coaches, and counsels start-up business owners.
Most of all, they use their acquired knowledge, experience, and skills to mentor a business owner to grow their business to the desired level.
The business owner or anyone under the tutelage of a mentor is called a “mentee” or protege.
In this blog post, we’ll be referring to the business owner seeking mentorship as a “mentee.”
An effective business mentor has the understanding that he has a role to play.
A good business mentor has to be ready and willing to give out their time to work and see that the mentee’s business grows.
Given this, there are specific roles a business mentor ought to play in a mentees life.
Let’s consider what these roles are.
Roles of a Business Mentor –How to Find a Business Mentor
The business mentor and mentee have a lot to learn from each other, that is, if both parties play their respective roles.
A business mentor functions in the following roles:
One important role of a business mentor is to be a patron, one who supports and protects.
A business mentor has to be someone significant in his/her business field.
This way, the mentor will have great connections and easily refer his/her mentee to other business partners.
He/she supports the mentee’s business by doing this.
This goes a long way to promote the mentee’s business in every way possible.
Referrals from a business mentor will open the mentees’ business to the world.
A good business mentor can decide to relate beyond the mentor /mentee relationship.
They can also advocate for their mentee, promote and influence their mentee’s status, abilities, and assets.
While doing this, the mentor also protects the mentee from forming the wrong business partnership or connection.
A role model is someone who serves as an example, whose behavior is emulated by others.
Mentees look up to their mentors.
Oftentimes, they also imitate or emulate their business approaches and possibly their behavior.
Consequently, a business mentor serves as a role model for the mentee’s business.
He acts as a role model that the mentee patterns his business after to achieve success.
Characteristics of a Good Business Mentor – How to Find a Business Mentor
A good business mentor is a priced advantage to your business.
Therefore, when looking for a business mentor, ensure that you look out for these characteristics:
Availability; Find a Business Mentor that’s Accessible and Available
A good business mentor has to be available when due.
If a meeting is set, he or she should be readily available to attend for the success of the mentorship.
You should be able to access him/her with ease when you need advice or help.
However, your access to your mentor depends on the bond and communication pattern agreed on by both parties.
The communication pattern could be text, emails, calls, or face-to-face meetings.
A good business adviser should be serious-minded; he shouldn’t give room for laziness or unnecessary comfort.
A business mentor knows that relaxing in your comfort zone will not push the business to the level it should get to.
Instead, your mentor should be willing to do everything possible to push you out of your comfort zone to make you work and get your desired objectives for the business.
A Good Listener – How to Find a Business Mentor
Listening is an essential characteristic of a business mentor.
Listening attentively helps the business mentor understand the mentee’s problems in business.
A good mentor needs to have excellent listening skills to pay attention to the mentee’s challenges.
This will make it easier for the business mentor/mentee to find solutions and map out effective strategies to help the business succeed.
Find a business teacher who can respect your point of view because you own the business and know what is needed.
Also, the mentor shouldn’t be someone who will treat you as inferior to them but as a friend or partner working together to achieve a common goal.
Above all, a good mentor shouldn’t be forceful with his ideas, especially if it is not in line with your point of view.
A Great Communicator – How to Find a Business Mentor
A business mentor should be able to communicate with his mentee in clear terms and simple to understand language.
This will prevent misconceptions and misunderstandings that could ruin the mentor/mentee relationship.
This is an important aspect of mentorship.
A good business mentor should be friendly, approachable, and likable.
This will help the mentor/mentee relationship to be successful.
What are your Reasons for Having a Business Mentor – How to Find a Business Mentor
As we earlier discussed, a business mentor support and guides.
However, there are several reasons for having a mentor.
Here are some of the reasons:
A Business Mentor Pushes You to Think Big
A business mentor helps you think outside of your comfort zone.
He/she motivates you to work on your ideas and think big.
Oftentimes, you might be afraid to take steps or try to bring innovation to your business.
This is when your business mentor steps in and makes you realize that risk-taking is essential in a business.
A mentor in business will work you through breaking barriers in your business.
This is because they have passed through this phase.
Ultimately, a good business mentor will push you to think big and add benefits to your business.
A Business Mentor Will Help Build Your Network
Networking is an essential aspect of a business.
It gives you connections that add benefits to your business.
A business mentor will help build your network by introducing you to his/her contacts and connections.
This way, you do not necessarily have to sort out new connections because you have a direct network you can rely on to help bring about more business growth.
However, you should not fully depend on that; learn to network on your own.
There’s a lot You Can Learn from The Mentors’ Experience and Perspectives – How to Find a Business Mentor
Another reason you could be searching for a business mentor is that you want to learn from others.
Specifically, you’ve identified someone in your chosen field who’s doing well.
Hence, you’ve decided to be a mentee to such individuals so that you can learn from their wealth of experience and master all the ropes in your chosen industry.
Your Business Mentor Helps in Clearing a Path
Starting a business as a fresher without knowing how to go about it will require a business mentor.
A business mentor could help you identify a clear path to follow and make the business seem less complex/overwhelming to you since you’re just starting.
Creates New Opportunities – How to Find a Business Mentor
You can also benefit from a business mentors’ network or connections.
A well-connected mentor can help you connect to those that matter in your business industry/field.
Thereby giving your business the needed exposure to grow.
Overall, the above-mentioned points are some of the reasons why you should, or any serious business person could be taking the pain to search for a business mentor.
Never mind, the question remains how can you get a business mentor?
Let’s discuss the steps on how to find a business mentor.
Steps on How to Find a Business Mentor
Outline the Qualities you need from your Mentor in Business
Take time to outline the qualities you need from your business mentor before searching for one.
Earlier, we mentioned some of the essential qualities a good mentor should have.
That could guide you on the qualities to look out for.
However, feel free to add other qualities based on your personality preferences and specific needs.
Having these qualities sorted out will help you.
Also, knowing what you want in a business mentor will prevent you from searching for long.
Be sure to engage the right business mentor that suits you and your business.
Look at these key questions before searching for a business mentor:
- The features I want in my business mentor (What characteristics are needed?)
- What type of experience am I expecting my business mentor to possess?
- Will you be working with your business mentor regularly? (Should it be monthly or weekly?)
- What are the ways you will be working with your business mentor? (Will it be through dialogue, text, or through calls?)
- What standards are vital to you in selecting your business mentor?
Above all, making sure of what you want from your business mentor makes it easy to search for one.
Get to Know More about Your Prospective Business Mentor – How to Find a Business Mentor
Since you have realized what you want in a business mentor, the next step is to get to know them better even before meeting them.
When checking for prospective business mentors, you will need them to add value to your business.
When searching for a prospective mentor, watch out for these:
Field experience in business
Working under a business mentor who is directly experienced in your field of business helps a lot.
Your business mentor will give advice and directions on how he got to where he is in business.
This experience can help you create your own success.
If you desire to expand on your business, a business mentor can help to make it a reality.
Given this, lookout for a skilled, experienced business mentor with proven experience in your field.
A good reputation
Select a mentor whose good reputation precedes him/her, someone with an unquestionable reputation.
A business mentor with a bad and questionable character can wreck your business.
To avoid this, do proper research before picking a business mentor.
Also, go for one with a good reputation or proven track record.
Approach Your Prospective Business Mentor
The next step to take once you are sure of the individual you want to mentor you is approaching them.
At this point, your manner of approach is essential.
It will determine if your prospective mentor will be willing to mentor you.
There is a right and wrong way of approaching your prospective mentor.
The wrong way will not yield results and might likely make your prospective mentor dislike you.
However, when you approach your mentor the right way, he/she will appreciate you and be willing to mentor you.
Here are the right ways to approach a business mentor:
Show Respect When Approaching a Business Mentor
The excitement to work with a prospective business mentor shouldn’t make you disturb your mentor with texts or calls till they respond to you.
Show respect when you communicate with them, give the business mentor time to get back to you.
This shows you have regard for him or her.
Create value – How to Find a Business Mentor
It is a known fact that your business mentor will add value to you and your business.
However, you should also do the same for your business mentor; add value to them.
Set your mind on how to go about this.
Let your business mentor know that you are not only out to receive but that you can give in return as well.
If you have no idea of how to add value to your business mentor, then ask.
When you ask a prospective business mentor, it will show them that you are serious about the mentorship.
Be precise – How to Find a Business Mentor
When you meet the person, be precise about what you want.
When you are clear about your goals, a business mentor will know if he can mentor you.
Mentoring should be convenient.
If you want your business teacher to give out their best mentoring, make it a convenient experience for them by clearly stating your expectations from the mentoring relationship.
Be ready to be mentored – How to Find a Business Mentor
What do we mean by this?
You should be ready with questions on things you want to know when you get an appointment with your business mentor.
Also, research your prospective business mentor and his place of work to know who you are meeting up with.
Overall, approach your business mentor in a way that will make him consider you for mentorship.
Set Guidelines of Interaction
When you get a business mentor who has accepted you, you are a step closer to working with him.
Set down the groundwork on how you will like the mentorship to be from the onset.
This requires you to have a clear expectation.
For instance, plan meetings before time; there should be effective communication with each other.
Avoid getting frustrated by doing this, and the mentor-mentee relationship will last longer.
The mentor and mentee should have an idea of how regularly they should connect.
This will help prevent misunderstandings in the future.
Set these guidelines:
- Mode of communication that a business mentor wants.
- What is expected of me from my business mentor?
- Your expectations from your business mentor.
- How regularly should we be working together?
- How am I to take it if my business mentor wants to stop mentoring me? Will I feel bad?
- How will my business mentor take it if I don’t want his mentoring anymore?
Setting clear expectations from the onset will put your business mentor and you on the same page.
This will make the mentor-mentee relationship a successful one.
Be sure this relationship has the necessary benefits, and it is profitable for both sides.
Following all these steps, the next thing for you is to start working with your mentor.
It’s one thing to find a business mentor.
It’s a different thing to have a long/sustainable working relationship.
How to Sustain the Mentor-Mentee Relationship – How to Find a Business Mentor
It is such a wonderful thing to have a mentor in business.
For the mentorship to yield great and positive profit results, you have to keep working together even when you have grown your business.
Even if you’re firm in business and can stand on your own, do not let go of your business mentor, except you both feel you can’t continue working together.
Just like you do not cut the connection with your parents once you are grown and living alone, do not cut the connection with your mentor.
The relationship should still be strong regardless of your growth level.
Listed below are ways to sustain the relationship between you and your business mentor:
It is necessary to respect and not cross the already set boundaries between you and your business mentor.
If your mentor doesn’t like texts or calls, try to avoid texting or calling to avoid misunderstanding.
If one of the expectations was not to meet regularly, don’t try to initiate new meeting days, except when there’s a mutual agreement to do so.
The level of respect you accord the relationship determines how beneficial, easy-going, and long-lasting it will be.
Act on suggestions – How to Find a Business Mentor
You accepted working with a particular business mentor because you admire and appreciate the level of knowledge and experience they have.
So, listen and learn from your business mentor.
Take heed to necessary corrections and suggestions from your mentor.
Failure to do so might come across as a lack of regard for the mentor.
Consequently straining the working relationship.
Give in return – How to Find a Business Mentor
A good mentor would likely give out a lot while mentoring you.
Their time, effort, support, money, and other things will be invested in you and your business.
To show your appreciation, ensure you give in return.
Do not only be on the receiving end.
Find out ways to add worth to your relationship to make it a mutually beneficial working relationship.
The higher the value your business mentor receives from you, the longer the mentor will want to keep mentoring you.
In a nutshell, adding value to your business mentor helps sustain the working relationship.
Conclusion on How to Find a Business Mentor
Running a successful business is not rocket science.
You’ll need to pull in all the resources, human and capital resources to ensure smooth operation in the business.
Another essential key to a successful business is having someone guide you every step of the way.
This is the role only a successful mentor can fill.
However, you have to take the pain to find a mentor as not everyone is lucky to have a mentor at his disposal.
Given this, the tips mentioned here will make the process of finding a business mentor much easier and effective.
Cheers to finding a good business mentor and a successful business.
Also, feel free to share your experience with us in the comments section below.
We would love to hear from you!