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A few questions to as yourself when looking for a mentor.



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A few questions to as yourself when looking for a mentor.

A mentor can do many things from train you to do things how they do it to help you get noticed at work and get that promotion you've been gunning for.  You'll always need to ask yourself some questions when looking for a mentor because you never want to follow someone that doesn't have your best intentions in mind.  Mentors can be a great thing, as long as they intended to help you out without draining your budget because then they teeter on the edge from being a mentor or a service provider.  That's why in this discussion I'll be going over a few questions you should ask yourself prior to investing yourself into a mentor and hoping they do the same with you.

Is your potential mentor happy with their career?
If your potential mentor is happy with their career choice, it will show in their work, and that's always a benefit for you.  If the mentor isn't happy with what they're doing, it won't work out for you in the long run because they won't be investing themselves into the work, especially when you're asking them a bunch of questions and expecting quality answers.  If you're really invested in finding the right mentor, you need to find someone that is happy with what they're doing because that will help you achieve what you want to, in a shorter amount of time.

Do you have admiration for this mentor?
Your potential mentor should be someone you look up to because they're in the field you want to be in and they have achieved goals you are trying to hit yourself.  This is a pretty obvious point, but if you don't admire your potential mentor, why are you even considering them to help you out?  Your mentor will treat you as a business relationship, so you better bring something to the table that they can benefit from.

Will this person actually listen to you?
When you talk to this person, do they actually listen to you or do they brush off your comments and concerns because the mentor thinks they're unimportant?  A good listener is what a mentor is because they need to know what your problems are prior to helping you fix them, or to help you grow as a person.  A great mentor will show you the right path and not try to alter your entire business model.  They will help you out along your journey, while adding in their own suggestions, but they will never make you do something you don't want to.

Does your potential mentor ever challenge you?
Learning something new and difficult isn't something we always want to do, and that is why a good mentor will challenge you along the way.  A great mentor will challenge you, but will never push you in a direction they deem the best route.  Rather, they will help you with what you want to do but they will push back on ideas that might not be the best for your success.  This will allow you to see from their point of view and get a better understanding of what needs to be done in order to achieve your goals which they have already surpassed.


In conclusion
Finding the right mentor isn't always the easiest thing to do.  You need to know if they like what they're doing or if they're burnt out because that will be a key factor in if they can help you achieve success.  You should usually admire your potential mentor because of their qualifications and what they've already done in their careers because you want to do the same.  You don't need a mentor who won't listen, a great one will listen to all of your questions and concerns, then address each of them with some quality information.  And to round it out, you will need a mentor that will actually challenge you, because that is how you build as a person and boost your own websites or businesses towards success in a quicker timeframe A few questions to as yourself when looking for a mentor.


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Thanks!

Tommy Carey

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jaymish

I think it's very important to have a mentor in life. Most people choose to have a mentor that is already 'successful' and has achieved what they want to achieve. I think you need to be careful when you're choosing a mentor. I normally recommend that you have a mentor you don't really know. Someone who you can read about or follow online and mimic. In my opinion only you know what you want in your life and only you can achieve it. We also have different paths and no one can decide yours and show how to walk it.



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Corzhens

My husband worked as a part time mentor in their office because he enjoys teaching people. He worked as a technical consultant and during that time there were so many who were not computer literate. It was great to be a mentor because you are respected as one who has the knowledge on the subject matter. Some students would even treat you as an expert in the field.



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overcast

Very interesting. I never had any mentor. And I have done things mostly on my own. I think mentors that suit our own way of doing are lot harder to find. You can see that some of the time it would be not that easy. Mentors need to be proactive on things though. If that works out it would be good enough too.



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JoeMilford

overcast,
I find it hard to believe that you have never had some sort of a mentor. Can you think of a favorite teacher? An influential elder? I know that we are speaking in context of a professional mentor here, but I think that we all have different kinds of mentors in our lives, and I think you have probably had some as well, so I was wanting you to clarify this for me a bit more. It would be sad if you had lived your life without some sort of mentor or person who influenced you in a positive and compulsory manner. i respect that you have been so fiercely independent, but i would hope you have had someone out there who you looked up to and aspired to follow in the footsteps of.



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Everett

I totally agree with this post. At some point Overcast had to of had a mentor. To overcast: A mentor can mean many different things. You do not learn things on your own. You learn things based off of other's knowledge. With that being said, I know they had a mentor. Now, they may not realize it, but there are tons of mentors here on the Community Discussions. We not have a mentor title, but we are always helping each other by providing a lot of great information, mentors and teachers are alike in the essence that they provide you with the tools you need to succeed, grow and be better at whatever it is that you want to do.



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overcast

I when we say mentor in today's world, it is more or less like pointing to the direction and a bit of hand holding towards the path. When I said I had no such person, I was referring to in that context. I have mostly been into extremely competitive world. And it was harder for me to understand how the mentor-ship works around.



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overcast

I can recall them but the path I am on with job and freelancing. I didn't find any mentor that can tell me that's the way one should go and all. It is more like the way mentoring is not that going to be easy on that part. I think that's my reason of saying I have no mentors. We meet influential people in life but those don't usually walk the same path as we do. And our circumstances are lot different.



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treecko142

One of the best traits any mentor could have is being a good listener. Mentors shouldn't impose on you, but rather guide you along the process and help you because they have experienced that road themselves, and so hearing your experiences and making it a two-way communication would lead to better results.



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JoeMilford

i think that the point you are making here is imperative. When mentoring my students, over the past 15 years, I have learned to just let them talk and get it ALL out before I start jumping in and making premature suggestions. Everyone communicates their thoughts and needs in different ways, so it is important to truly listen to someone and put your self in his or her shoes in order to empathize with their situation and then try to come up with the best course of action to help them achieve their goals and also to hopefully reduce their stress levels. I have seen completely competent students not perform well just because they do not handle stress well, and giving them the support and instruction which they need can go a long way in helping this problem.



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DenisP

While I definitely agree that it is important to have admiration for your mentor, it can also be somewhat of a slippery slope. You have to be careful with just how much you admire this mentor. I say this because several times in my life, I've looked up to and idolized people that I really shouldn't have. You need to make sure that your admiration is in check, because sometimes it can blind you to who your mentor really is. Always try to get a second opinion on them, as it may turn out that you're wearing rose-tinted glasses and not actually seeing them for who they are, which can obviously lead to problems under their guidance.



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Everett

I think people are so consumed in some people that they do not care what they have done in the past, or a current action that they may have done now. For instance, in the news (especially in the United States) there is a guy named Harvey Weinstein in which many aspiring actresses and actors looked up to. What they failed to realize is, is that he is not the great person he seems to let on. In fact he took advantage of people wanting to enter the area of Hollywood. There are still some that are so supportive of him that they are trying to help him pay his legal fees - they still have on their "rose-tinted" glasses! So yes, what you just mentioned is an important piece of information. In the pubic eye, people create their own personas, you have no idea what or who is really behind that public persona.



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DenisP

The fact is that no one is perfect, and we have all made mistakes in our past. If someone has done something regrettable in the past but is working on themselves and towards a better future, I'd say one could look past their transgressions and forgive them.

However, then there are people like Harvey Weinstein. What he did wasn't one regrettable mistake. His actions were calculated, repeated, manipulative, intentional and what's worse is he shows no real remorse. People like that are the bottom of the barrel, and it is sad that there are people out there still willing to defend them.

I don't mean to get all worked up, but Weinstein is just an awful person; a predator in every sense.



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JoeMilford

DenisP,
I really appreciate your comment here regarding this possible slippery slope. At my institution, when they hire a new professor, especially an adjunct, they assign another professor to the new-hire as a "mentor"; however, these are online courses, and the mentor's role ends up being just trying, overall, to correct any issues or mistakes that the new hire experiences or commits and then move on from there--we call it "putting out fires". This, to me, is not true mentorship, and it does not establish, so far, the best relationship between the new person and the experienced person. I am not sure how they match professionals up in this system based upon compatibility except for the fact that they teach the same courses. In other words, the mentorship role is always a tricky one, and it is interpreted differently everywhere that we work.



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DenisP

That sort of system doesn't seem like true mentorship to me either, so I agree with you in that regard. What you described to me almost sounds like the "mentor" is playing more of a managerial role, more than anything else. To be so removed from the experience, I don't think you can act as a true mentor. In my opinion, true mentorship involves being there for your student in every aspect of an experience, and not just being there to "put out a fire", as you put it.



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treecko142

True. Idolize what the person has done for a particular field, not the person himself because you don't know all the actions of that person and no matter how great that person is, nobody's perfect. In addition, some bad people over the course of history have also done some wonderful things in his life which could be taken inspiration on.



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kgord

Yes, it just makes sense that the person be happy with their career. You would not want to have a mentor that can't stand their career. It is important to make sure that you have someone who likes what they do. It is just a way that they show who they are.



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JoeMilford

Why even have a mentor if you do not respect him or her? I would do research on this person's accomplishments, first of all, before I ever approached them to be my mentor. Also, if the so-called mentor is not happy with his or her career, then being mentored by them might very well impart a total sense of negativity upon you, and you need to avoid this to stay positive on your own business path towards your accomplishments. A mentor is someone who has already been successful, more or less, on the journey that you yourself are now imparting upon. A mentor should have unique, experienced, and useful insight into your hopes for success and how to get you there!



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Everett

I would definitely agree as well. If your mentor is not in it 100%, then they simply do not care about your success. This brings me back to my days of a day job, and having managers that were not in it and just there to earn the money. If you are showing others that you don't care, then this behavior won't reflect very well and will actually cause more harm than good. Even if you are at a point where you are not totally in it, don't display it because a lot of people may look up to you and you may not even realize it! :/



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Judas2018

I think when choosing a mentor it should be someone you've heavily vetted and trust, implicitly. That means that the search for a potential mentor shouldn't be a rush to judgment, but instead... a slow, thorough well-thought out process.



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vinaya

I don't have a mentor and I am not a kind of person who relies on a mentor to become successful or achieve something. I look upon the masters, industry leaders, experts, successful people and always try to understand how they are doing this, and what skills and knowledge they have.



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overcast

Pretty much. I kind of follow eklavya type mindset. Self learning from observing others or making our own mistakes. That seems to be the way to work around. I don't think modern days mentors are as good as they once were. That's what I have realized.



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aeon

Our natural mentor since birth for me, is actually our Father. We don't need to look for another person. Beating your father's record in life is one of our goal, or maybe just me. Sorry for the single parents, or didn't met their father. But that's my opinion. In generally speaking, We are looking for a mentor if we want to do some specific things, like in sports, music, work, etc. But our father teach us how to become better person and encourages us to focus on what ever things we want to do.



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Kakashi2020

I had a few mentors in my professional career one in sales, marketing and businedevelopment, one in the construction industry and one in entrepreneurship.
They became my mentors not that im searching for one but because they where my bosses and they really need to teach me what they know in order for me to do my job effectively.

My take on this is you don't have to search and pay for one.



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Pixie06

I think that it is very important to have a mentor especially when you have just started a business. This person will guide you so that you don't do any mistakes which can have an adverse effect on your business. You will also learn from this mentor. Before hiring a mentor for my business I undertook some research about that person and I hired him only after receiving positive feedbacks. I am glad that I hired someone like him as he is an expert in his field and knows the ins and outs of this business. He is also very down to earth and someone I look up to.



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Barida

I see mentoring in business as a way that one can really fly in a way when they begin a new business. The thing with your mentor is that he/she must have been quite knowledgeable in that area to guide your steps so that you won't make mistakes in the business that you decide to do.



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Corzhens

This reminds me of a writing workshop attended by a friend where the lecturer confessed that being a writer is an agony when it comes to finances. In fact, he is not advising people to be a writer. That you will enjoy being a writer when you become popular but if not, it was like you have wasted a big part of your life. So maybe if the mentor is not happy with his work, you have to think again before hiring him.



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Barida

The mentor is someone that will stand with us in times of difficulty and time of celebration, so ensuring that we have one that is able to give a listening ear to everything that concerns us is very necessary and just like I always tell my pals that the type of mentor that is keen to see you grow will always make things easier for you by advising you on what to do and what not to do in your journey of becoming somebody in life.



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flyinwashi682

I love your very kind messages man!



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