As time progresses the concept of a mentor becomes more and more of a dated concept, whether due to increased social insecurity or due to an ignorance of the benefits a more experienced individual can offer, I do not know. What I do know is that having a mentor has been a tremendously influential aspect of my life. Thus, I have decided to write down some of my thoughts explaining just how and why a mentor’s insight is truly invaluable.
A mentor has had experience you have yet to have, or may never have. If you can tap into the lessons they have already learned and apply them to your own professional career, you will attain an unquantifiable advantage over your professional peers. With a mentor, you don’t have to learn things the hard way. The hard way becomes a thing of the past as a business coach can guide you to and through astounding opportunities that will breed the career you desire.
A mentor has spent years and years building a social network you have yet to develop. From being exposed to opportunities that would otherwise fly over your head to receiving glowing letters of recommendation, these experienced and insightful individuals have your back. Mentors want to see their students succeed, and it is for this reason that a mentor is a nearly necessary cog in the wheel of professional networks. Tap into their connections to meet the man or woman who will offer you the career you have always dreamed of. To be scared to reach out to a mentor is essentially ignoring a vast network of professional superiors who are looking to give you a job that is better than the one you already have. Use the trust your mentor has already built to build your own network, to build your own career, to build yourself for the better.
Staying on track
For those moments when we as individuals question where we are in life, a mentor is actually there to answer. There is no need to become bogged down in social and professional anxiety when you have someone to ask for guidance. A mentor is there for you to answer the tough questions and to help you in your professional (or social in some cases) quest for success. Although tough to exonerate numbers behind this particular point, the fact remains that a mentor will offer you truly immeasurable solace.
Anyway, this is just what I have noticed in my own professional career. While I would never say having a mentor will make or break your career, I can certainly say it will help to a phenomenal degree. The choice is yours, but one moment of awkwardness asking for someone to be a mentor can equate to a lifetime of insight. As Newton said, “If I have seen further than other men, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants.”
For further reading on the value of a mentor, you should check out this New York op-ed.