Become A Giraffe Part 3
How To Find Your Target Mentors & Get Them On Board
So, here it is, the final part of our 3-part blog-series on Mentors. Below is the answer to the burning question of how to find mentors and get them on board. Enjoy!
1. Make a list of 10 potential mentors. Not everyone you approach to be your mentor is going to say ‘yes’. That’s why you will sometimes have to admit defeat, and move onto the next person on your list. Choose wisely though – you want a good range of experience and skillsets in your list. BONUS TIP: Start at the top, reach for the stars, pick the person who has done what you want to do to the max. Don’t be shy about picking up the phone to a C-level executive – their response might surprise you (in a good way).
2. Beggars can’t be choosers. Don’t look for the perfect person (you won’t find them), just look for the person who has done what you want to do. As long as they’ve done what you want to do, and have 10-20 years’ experience on you; then they will be useful to you!
3. Be patient, persistent & learn to absorb. Unless it’s someone you know extremely well already, you’re not going to ask them to mentor you, it’s going to happen, naturally, over time, so you have to be patient. Set a mid-long term, progressive, adaptable goal. These people are busy, and there’s more in it for you than there is for them. You can’t take the mentality that the person will teach you. You need to become an absorption machine.
4. Be someone with whom they will want to spend time. Think about why you’ve chosen that specific person. What is it you admire about them that inspires you? Find these qualities within yourself – who asks you for help? What is it they admire in you? In other words, what you can bring to the party that will interest them.
5. Reward them before you ask them to reward you. This is where you’ll need to get creative and come up with some ideas on how to approach them, how to stand out, and ultimately how to get yourself to a position where you will be invited to spend time with them. Principally, you need to give them value, before you can expect them to give it back to you. Perhaps you could send them something you know they will like (I don’t mean a gift necessarily, an interesting article or idea to a challenge you know they’re having may suffice), perhaps show your admiration by asking them to do an interview for your blog, then you could send them a follow up thank you gift.
The above are tips that will get you on the journey. Unfortunately, there is not one solid, definite approach because you need to get under the skin of the person you want to be your mentor.
COACHING QUESTIONS – You can do these in your head, on a piece of paper, or even leave a comment below.
1. Based on the list of mentors you compiled in part 2, think about each one individually. What do you know about them that gives you an insight into their personality, needs, or interests that you could leverage?
2. Based on the insights you’ve built for each mentor, what ideas do you have to provide value to each potential mentor, and how will you approach them?
Join me in my quest to read 1 article per day on a topic that I wouldn’t usually read; and use #oneunlikelyarticle
Adapted from tailopez.com.