The Power of a Mentor

By: Jim Corter

It is not easy to plan out every detail in your professional career but acquiring a mentor can serve as a valuable asset in guiding, in directing, and in coaching you. And sometimes a mentor can even open doors and opportunities not otherwise attainable.

It may already be that you have someone similar to this that you consider as a more informal mentor or someone you go to occasionally for advice. Or maybe your current relationship with your mentor has fallen by the wayside. If this is true then start back today in building that strong connection again with your mentor who can support you in your career.

Maybe currently you do not have a mentor. It is not difficult to find one. In order to save valuable time it is important to gather clarity around what you want from this person. Three ways to narrow your focus on finding mentors are:
1. Write out realistic goals for your mentor relationship
2. Seek out someone who best fits those goals
3.  Set up times to meet and discuss your goals

Perhaps your seeking advice or insight on how to manage office politics or company culture. Maybe you’re considering expanding your business or perchance pondering a career change. Mentors can be beneficial modes for achieving these goals and may potentially open your eyes to possibilities that you might have missed.

It is pertinent to seek out specific traits when choosing a mentor. Here are 5 you can start with:

  1. Someone who is highly successful in their field:
    * Benefit by learning from the best. They can shed insight on what it takes to get to the top.
  2.  Someone who is highly motivated and driven:
    * Their energy  can be contagious and help to motivate your own drive
  3.  Someone who is a balanced visionary:
    * They can be realistic in helping you develop your own vision and teach you how to reach professional goals
  4. Someone who may be your personality opposite:
    *Having someone with a different vantage point can help you sharpen areas in which you may be lacking
  5. Someone who is resourceful and creative:
    *They may help with generating new ideas and approaches. Seeking wise council while mapping out your career path will pay off in dividends. Having someone in your corner to motivate you, challenge you and to guide you to the best of your ability is what a mentor does best. Make it a priority for yourself today by finding a mentor that can help take you professionally to the next level.

With over 28 years of experience in Human Resources and Performance Management Improvement Jim Corter has cultivated the right tools for affective leadership training. Jim has served as HR Manager for two Fortune 1000 companies, which included three plant start-ups. In 1995, Jim opened up Corter Consulting Incorporated. His client base now includes over 300 organizations, and he has coached over 300 leaders. Over 7,000 candidates and existing employees of organizations have been assessed in order to help them 1) understand their strengths, 2) their limitations, 3) and more effectively communicate with others.