Many employees and entrepreneurs alike may shy away from reaching out to seek guidance and advice from a mentor for a number of reasons. They may not know who the ‘right’ mentor is, or feel that they don’t want to ‘waste’ someone’s time in asking them to be their mentor.
But these are just ‘mentoring myths’ that need to have some light shed on them, because the reality is the following:
You can have more than one mentor
It’s never really a good idea to shut yourself off to opportunities, and mentoring is no different. People have expertise in different areas, and if you want to broaden your skill range in a number of different things, then you can find a mentor for each – something that is of course highly applicable to entrepreneurs. Don’t withdraw from a mentor search because you are concerned with finding the “right one”.
Mentorship doesn’t necessarily require a great time commitment
Any apprehension about wasting your mentor’s time should be thrown out of the window. It’s easy to keep in contact via email, but of course it will be very beneficial to have quick face-to-face meetings each month. If that’s not possible, a video chat will still add value. Also, remember that it’s not only you that gets something out of the mentorship – mentors also learn many valuable lessons from being a mentor – you’re not wasting their time.
Your mentor does not need to be older than you
The idea that your mentor(s) should be older than you doesn’t seem to feature anymore. Reverse mentoring is a concept that is being accepted more and more by all generations. Just because someone is one or two (or even 10) years younger than you, doesn’t mean they aren’t an expert and can’t offer great advice in a certain skillset.