A mentor is someone who shares with you their time and experiences about how they accomplished their goals, cheers you on, and provides you with genuine feedback, hence, you might need a mentor for career development. A good mentor-mentee relationship acts as an aid towards a more nourishing and prosperous experience at work, enhanced motivation to achieve the best work-life balance, and at times even aids in getting that promotion you were working so diligently for.
The first task to have a good mentor is to find one. This is not a very easy task as when we begin our work journey at an organisation, it takes us time to establish a rapport and understanding of the situation. There are a few tips which might be helpful while finding a mentor.
But finding a mentor is not as simple as the idea of it sounds, mostly because it’s often an informal relationship( informal interactions among people that can happen outside the established structure of any organization) and it’s hard to find a mentor when you are at the beginning of your journey at an organization. To find the mentor that would be most helpful for your career, you need to first identify your short and long-term goals. Think about what you want to accomplish in the next 3 months and the next 10 years in your professional life? Can you achieve these goals in your current job? What do you need to work on to get closer to your goals?
Remember, the more specific you are about your goals, the easier it is to find a good mentor for you. One strategy to make optimal goals is to use the SMART method.
The next major step is to find potential mentors for you. And the best way to do this is by searching and gathering information about those people who are currently at what you aim to be once you achieve your long-term goals in the future. Hence, think about people whose job or work you would like to do in the next 10 years and search for them in both the internal and external environment of your job. Then, make a list out of those potential mentors and approach them in person or online with your mentor-mentee relationship proposal.
To make a good impression on potential mentors, try to keep your elevator pitch ready, mention what you like about their work and clarify what you expect from them, as well as how much you can commit to them while making your proposal.
Finally, Discuss, make agreements and reach a consensus regarding your schedules and agendas with your mentor and keep working on yourself with their guidance. As you grow further you can have a board of mentors to help you with their unique expertise in multiple areas.