As you start your career, you will hear everywhere and from almost everyone that you should have a mentor. There are many advantages in having a mentor. The members of the AFWA LEAP Council share their top 5 reasons why:
- An Advocate – A mentor can be someone within your company or outside the company. If they are within your company, and a superior, it’s nice having an advocate in your corner when you are not in the room. For them to be your advocate, don’t hesitate to talk with them about what’s going on in the work place and also events that are happening personally. Make sure you talk with them about the positive things you are doing or working on areas that you need to focus on.
- Honesty – An honest relationship with a mentor will help you understand how you’re coming across to other people and give you an outside perspective into your behavior and mannerisms. This can help you grow leap & bounds professionally as well as personally. Let’s be honest, we all have those habits we forget exist.
- An Unmodified Opinion – That extra support can give you a professional opinion of issues you are having, and provide an unbiased opinion versus going to your family or friends.
- The Fresh Perspective – A mentor can provide a fresh perspective on a particular situation, especially if your mentor is outside of your company. This can also be beneficial because there may be an area that you struggle with, that may be an area that they are strong in.
- Career decisions – A mentor can be a good resource if you are trying to make a career decision and or are seeking career-related advice. They may have gone through a similar situation themselves, or know of a position that might fit what you are looking for.
These reasons are only a few to the benefits of having a mentor. You can also have more than one mentor or rotate mentors once you feel your needs have changed. These relationships will build your business connection network as well. Finding a mentor can be as easy as asking. If the company you work for doesn’t have a mentoring program, ask someone you admire, they normally would be flattered. But it’s important that if they are putting in the work, that you are as well. Be proactive and ask your mentor questions. Set goals with them so that you can both monitor the progress and benefits of the mentorship.