... is a quick tip ezine for Managers who believe in "Results Derived from Within"
Written by: Vickie Bevenour, a Professional Certified Coach, PCC
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You have a Mentor?
I spent much of this month in a delightful engagement with the MBA students at North Carolina State University. At this time of year the graduating students are looking forward to starting their new job
and the first year students are anxious to make the most of their summer internships. I facilitated a workshop titled: “How to maximize your performance in the first 100 days on the job”; in which I suggested six robust steps. With all of the positive feedback that I received, it occurred to me that many of these steps could also be helpful to those of us who are way past their first 100 days.
Of particular note is the concept of creating successful coalitions both internal and external, to your organization. One of the tactical suggestions for this concept is to immediately select and secure a mentor and to never be without a mentor throughout your professional life. There was a flurry of questions on this subject which I have detailed below:
What would be the value of having a mentor, or of being a mentor to others?
A mentor can:
- Help you understand the informal politics of your organization
- Help guide you in the next steps of your career
- Help coach you through challenging projects or relationships
- Help you build and implement a personal development plan
- Help introduce you to influential people
- Help you live and communicate your personal brand
What should I look for in a mentor?
- Someone who has been in your organization for a while and is “plugged in”
- A “thought leader” in your discipline, technology, or industry
- Someone whose career path is one that you would like to emulate
- Someone whose business acumen you admire
- Someone not in your direct management line
What should I work on with my mentor?
You should have a specific goal of what you would like to accomplish with this person and, it should be linked to the rationale behind your choice of this individual as your mentor in the first place. You could use the list above as a starting point to determine exactly how you would like your mentor to assist you. Ideally you should explain your goal(s) and clarify your choice as to why you have chosen them for this role at the point that you ask
them to be your mentor. Next, you could ask if the two of you could meet once a month for one hour for the next six months. This clarifies the time commitment for both of you. Finally, have an agenda or goal for each meeting. At the end of those six months, do not forget to thank your mentor in a hand-written note or with a small gesture as a token of your appreciation. Explain precisely how they have helped you and what you intend to do with this
new inspiration. You should also plan to “check-in” with this person in the future to keep them apprised of how your career is progressing. Lastly, find your next mentor.
For those of you who are more experienced either by years or circumstance it is never too late to:
- Get a mentor - there is always someone who can teach you something
- Be a mentor
- Suggest to a more junior person that they get a mentor
Congratulations you are well on your way to taking charge of your career and your personal development by
deriving results from within.
*To review any of these past newsletters, please visit the Newsletter section of www.CoachVickie.com
If you like the tip, let us know but more important, share it with a friend or colleague. As always, YOUR SUCCESS IS MY GREATEST PLEASURE.