How Do I Find A Mentor ?

In this blogpost, we continue with the series on Mentors and Mentorship.

Mentors are those whose experience and wisdom you can gain from. They are said to have a positive impact on an employee’s career progression, job satisfaction, motivation levels and his/her commitment to a company. They spur you on when the chips are down and see the potential in you that you yourself do not see.
Now, the obvious question arises: How do you find a suitable mentor? They say “A truly great mentor is hard to find, difficult to part with, and impossible to forget.”

Let us look at some of the ways in which you can find suitable mentors:

1. Mentorship programmes – Corporate mentorship programmes are run by various companies to boost employee retention and increase employee engagement. Such programmes are a great place to gain from the wisdom of seasoned professionals. Finding a mentor in your own company will make it easier for you to meet your mentor at regular intervals. Ensure that this mentor is someone who not only shares your values but is also willing to share his knowledge and experience with you. As people move higher up the ladder in a company, mentorship programmes are considered to be the most effective talent development initiatives that help in moulding careers.

2. Networking Events – Networking events are the places where you could find someone in your field whom you have always looked upto. You need to be extremely proactive in order to find a mentor at a networking event. Finding a mentor and convincing them to be able to find time to mentor you, can be quite challenging. Mentors will need to see a tremendous drive in you to be convinced to lend you their time.

3. Linkedin and Twitter – While searching for a mentor on professional networking websites like Linkedin, you have to be very clear about what you are looking for in a mentor. Try to learn as much as possible about the person before approaching him for mentorship. Send out a brief note about your interests and accomplishments to the potential mentor and list out the reasons why you think he would be able to help you in your career path.

4. Mentors from different fields – People like Richard Branson, English business magnate, investor and philanthropist have admitted to having a network of mentors for different fields. It is better to find mentors who are specialists in their fields – in order to learn and gain more from their experiences. Mentees should also, in turn, show their eagerness to learn from mentors and ensure that they show their gratitude for the mentors’ time and guidance.

Thus, you can see that there are many places where you can find the right mentor for yourself. Finding mentors can help one to reach great heights in one’s professional career - however, remember this quote by American singer, songwriter and actress, Diana Ross – ““You know, you do need mentors, but in the end, you really just need to believe in yourself.”

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