A good mentor creates opportunities and opens doors, and understands your strengths and abilities. The training you receive and the associations you build, often through your mentor, enable you to eventually function independently – whatever your ultimate career path might be.
At different points of time in life, you might need the help of an expert to guide you with advice or information to help you take the next step forward. That is exactly when you need a business mentor, a person who can be an educational, career and a personal matter resource you can look up to.
In a competitive world where many women are trying to climb the corporate ladder at the workplace, it would be a lot easier if you had the right mentor to introduce you to the people and opportunities that would help you shorten your learning curve.
How To Find A Mentor At Work
Before you set out in search of a mentor, here are some facts that you need to give a clear thought about.
• What do you need right now?
• Who are the people that inspire you professionally?
• What are your commitments and expectations?
• Do you have a timeline?
• What are your concerns and fears?
It is always not necessary that you wait for a mentor to find you. You can initiate the process too. Here are a few tips on how and where to start your search.
Look around you
Sometimes, the people you interact with daily can be a potential mentor. They can be someone who you admire professionally, people working with you at your level, or even those who are two or three levels above you. Anyone whose advice you feel would help you handle dilemmas, tackle difficult problems or help you think through can be good mentors.
While a mentor can help you get where you want, it is you who has to decide what you want. Before you expect a mentor to help you in search of something, know what exactly you are looking for.
Talk to your organization
A number of companies in the recent times are setting up mentoring programs to help employees develop their talents. Enroll yourself in such programs if your organization is offering something. If not, you can suggest them to start one too. Even people in your HR department can act as facilitators in helping you find a mentorship network.
Watch out for mentors amongst your peers
It is not necessary that mentors should come with a string of qualifications or titles. Anyone who can help you reach your career ambitions can be a good mentor. You just don’t have to go for big names always.
Read a lot
When you read professional magazines and find articles that inspire you, you can try to get in touch with the authors whose work you find inspiring. With the right approach, you’ll find a woman willing to be your mentor, so this is definitely worth a try.
Don’t restrict yourself to a single mentor
It is good to have more than one mentor. Being a part of a group or choosing different mentors for different aspects like switching careers or education is definitely advantageous.
A combination of women mentors and women protégées have been proven to work out best as women mentors can understand your needs and help you in create a good work-life balance. A mentor can be a blessing to any woman’s career, and someday you might be called to become one too.