Where can I get trusted advice?
The definition of the word mentor is a wise and trusted counselor or teacher. This isn’t always a direct leader or someone you work with daily, but invariably someone you can trust to give you honest feedback and reliable advice. In business, it’s up to you to ensure you have the tools and experience to succeed. While companies provide training, they don’t always provide the long-term guidance and career building advice that a mentor can deliver.
Choose this person wisely. Sometimes it pays to have someone in your company who knows the landscape and can give you sound counsel. Other times you may be better off connecting with someone who is outside your organization and can help you see your best path irrespective of your current company.
Either way, you need to choose this person and be fairly explicit that you value their advice and would like their support. Most people that are willing to act in this capacity for others are flattered by a request for advice and friendship. But don’t just choose a direct supervisor or other higher up player than you. Mentoring comes in all shapes and sizes. A good mentor might be an older friend with significant experience or someone who knows the ropes at your company but isn’t on the same career path as you.
Make the relationship count by being thoughtful about how and when you enlist support. Most importantly, LISTEN. It’s not enough to ask for someone else’s perspective. You have to consume it, process it and then decide on your path. Mentors have made careers, improved quality of life and inspired greatness from their mentorees. None of us can do it alone and finding that special consiglieri can change your path and augment your success. So, choose wisely, Grasshopper.
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