Connect With Peers & Mentors the Right Way

Connect With Peers & Mentors the Right Way

Professional success does not have to be achieved alone. Peers and mentors alike can offer individuals a valuable source of support to enhance their performance in the workplace. Peers and mentors can offer a cost-effective method to train and upgrade your skill set, so learn how to maximise these opportunities and connect with these individuals the right way.

How To Connect With Peers & Mentors the Right Way!

Know the difference between a mentor, a friend, and a coach

You must understand what a mentor is, and how this differs from other professional colleagues. A mentor should be able to tell you what you need to hear, whereas a friend is more likely to tell you what you want to hear. A business coach’s objective is to help you develop general business skills; a mentor, in contrast, aims to teach you based on particular situations. You must come to understand that the same person cannot be all of these at one instance, and that you must carefully select individuals to suit each purpose you require.

Business professionals, mentor

Set clear objectives for your business growth

Prior to selecting the ideal person to approach about mentoring, it is imperative to decide exactly what it is you need mentoring on. For instance, an illustrious financial executive may not be the best mentor for an individual hoping to build and execute a great marketing background. If you don’t have an objective, you will not know when you’ve accomplished your task. Mentally plan and prepare before you set out on the actual journey.

Work hard and make the time for guidance

The very best mentors are the most interested in helping persons who are willing to learn and grow quickly. Excuses won’t cut it. Make the time to meet with your mentor and always make an honest effort to understand and implement their guidance and instructions.

Business mentor

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Don’t ask for too much of their time

Whereas you should make the time for your mentor, it is important to recognize that you cannot always expect the same in return. The best mentors are very likely busy people. They may not be able to assist you as frequently and as succinctly as you would desire. The best approach to make the most of such circumstances is to ask for small but regularly scheduled segments of time; as little as ten minutes at a time can suffice. Meet in private and be ready with real issues to discuss.

Lead the discussion

Your mentor should not be driving your business. They should also not be expected to provide crucial feedback on actions taken or not taken. It’s most effective if the mentee comes up with the agenda and drives for specific insight. However, this must be done in a fashion that does not press the mentor or derails the knowledge the mentor wants to impart.

Send regular progress reports to your mentor

There is nothing that makes a potential mentor more open to aiding your development than seeing that you are taking their advice to heart. Send regular updates that demonstrate that you are following through on strategies and lessons learned, and that the help is greatly improving your work.

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Keep the relationship positive and productive

Just like any healthy relationship, negativity cannot be a significant component of your interactions. Try to be positive and responsive to your mentor. If your mentor proves to be unresponsive or overly negative in their “assistance,” do not be afraid to exit out of the relationship as soon as possible. It does no good to waste your time or antagonize them with a poor relationship.

Business professionals

A prudent businessman uses every possible tool at their disposal. This should include the use of peer guidance and professional mentors. By using the techniques mentioned above, be mentored the right way and reap the benefits that can come from this experience.

Make sure you’re ready to to take your career to CEO level and succeed. Sign up to the CI Executive Career Management programme and get access to a Career Coach to guide and coach you through your journey to board level. Also don’t forget to keep a lookout for the top roles that become available in emerging markets.

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About the author

Jamie McDermott

Involved in Business Development and Technologies at Career Intelligence. Based in the Fleet Street, London office since the start of 2014.

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