The 8 Hats a Mentor Wears to Pilot Your Success.
Looking to kick start your job search or professional life? Whether you are entering the world of work for the first time or hoping to move to a new industry, the support and guidance of a mentor can prove to be a major advantage. A mentor is a more experienced and seasoned professional who can take you under his or her wing, help you get to the next step and keep pushing to reach your goals.
A mentor performs many roles to guide you to success. Does your mentor wear one of these hats?
1: The Helpful Guide.
Many mentors are senior professionals with tremendous levels of experience. They know the industry well and have been where you are. Having a mentor is beneficial at this point because they are in an ideal position to help you explore options and develop strategies on how to find job opportunities.
2: The Lamp Lighter.
As a job seeker, sometimes you may find yourself losing focus. You may not comprehend the job description, may probably apply for the wrong jobs and stay active but not productive. A mentor will make your job search more focused by guiding you on the right path and beyond support, provide perspective when it comes to decisions.
3: The Network Builder.
Your mentor’s industry awareness can help you network better. A good mentor will have many contacts from which you may benefit from. He or she can refer you to the right people in your career line who will assist you on the journey to finding success.
4: The Interview Pro.
You are more likely to get called for interviews when you work closely with a mentor with the skills to build you strongly. Once you get to the interview stage, an experienced mentor can prepare you further with mock interviews, presentations, body language fine tuning and salary negotiation tips.
5: The Blind-spot Checker.
Your mentor will be able to spot things that you might find harder to assess: Are you using the right language and keywords for your industry and job level? Do you have a compelling story or have you undersold yourself? Are you able to showcase your accomplishments convincingly? And more.
6: The Strength Builder.
Only a mentor can help you reflect on your capabilities and offer a reality check, comparing your current ambitions with what’s out there in your target sector.
They can assess your strengths and weaknesses, as well as build your skills for a successful long-term career.
7: The Focus Finder.
A mentor can keep you focused on your goals. They’ll help bring your focus back to your plan while maybe making subtle changes, but without lurching around from one strategy to another. With the right focus, they’ll help you hone the plan for executing your professional path to achieve your career goals, faster.
8: The Success Partner.
Mentorship is one of the ultimate forms of collaboration. Collaboration with a mentor can help you think outside the box, gain perspective on new roles, and prioritize your search efforts. One of the best things a mentor can give you is honest feedback and objective advice about how you are seen by others. They can also give you an unbiased opinion about your actual and potential market reputation.
How and Where to Find a Mentor.
Now that you understand that having a mentor is essential for success, identifying a potential mentor and reaching out in the correct way is the next big step.
While you could try the cold call approach, you’re likely to be more effective if you connect with a senior professional at a conference or networking event. It’s also worth checking at your school or place of work if they run mentoring programs.
You may contact the ACE World Foundation for possible mentors [firstname.lastname@example.org]. The TRIEC organization also runs the popular Mentoring Partnership program. Two organizations to seek a mentor in Canada are the Canadian Association of Marketing Professionals – www.CAMPNetworking.ca and the PINS network – www.Networksforimmigrants.ca.