I need someone to look up to in business. Someone I can learn from. A person I can trust to teach me the right way to do business and give me the right information.
How do I go about finding this person? Is it a public figure I admire from afar or someone close to home? Is it someone I know to be successful so that I can learn the tricks of the trade and have full confidence in their ability based on their track record? Someone to teach me how to accomplish the same success they’re experiencing.
Is it the latest influencer on Insta. Someone with millions of followers. I could be one of those followers. But what will this new class of admirable business people teach me? Perhaps something about image? Presentation? Customer perception? Cultivating support in a competitive environment? Staying power and versatility. How to keep being relevant in a fast-paced niche where trends are constantly evolving. Perhaps they can teach me something about evolving the ‘self’ as a business.
Should I take a traditional approach. Find someone I know. Someone whose hand I can shake and speak to face to face. Someone seasoned in the hard knocks and recovery of business. Who’ve tried and failed and gotten up to try again. A person I’ve watched evolve before my very eyes, seen them holding their heads in their hands in momentary defeat to a financial conundrum.
A Neo I’ve seen dodge creditors like bullets flying into an invisible wall falling in a pile at their feet. Someone who has created for themselves a matrix. A world within a world. An escape from a dire reality, devoid of glory and pomp. Into a world at their choosing, of their making. A world outside of the world they know, a new world. A simulation of networks and characters working together towards a common goal: survival within the system. Escapism, from a known reality but also an escape from deletion.
Yes, I love the movie the matrix, clearly. But I’d like to do more than just survive at something. I would love to succeed and leave a legacy. Continuance, longevity, glory.
Who is the person that will teach me to expertly dodge ‘bullets’? Who is the ONE? The ultimate influencer the person who could persuade me and steer my direction. Yes, the direction of my choosing but ultimately influenced. Actions taken believed to be right because someone said so. Who has that say so? How do we choose them and allow them to be co-engineer in our network? Who will prevent, in the very least delay, our deletion? How will they help our upskill in the way of spine flexing exercise to the dodge? Someone to be the shield that will come to stop, drop and roll our enemies on the ground?
These are the important questions I must ask myself.
Arsenal of mentors
In truth, I could go with an army of mentors. But the decision, the action will inevitably be mine alone. Everyone is your influencer. But you are the neo of your own business. The one that decides to do it or not. You will become an influence too. In your business, your family, your community.
Perhaps a good question to ask myself is, what kind of influencer/mentor do I want to be? To this answer, my current mentor will arise because I will be seeking within them a certain ME. A future me and they will help me get there.
What will be your substance, the depth in your commodity. The likes 100 to your life-altering gift to the world. Is allowing yourself to be influenced in the name of the person, or in the content they provide. Is it their entertainment value. Who are they in the day to day behind the screen version of yourself. Will they help you make a success of yourself. Can you become them on your current path, can you influence others by said legacy.
Real question is, in the quest to become an influencer yourself in business…Who will most likely influence you toward the success you want to be? That is a mentor, surely. You must influence your market in a positive way so that they want to do business with you. So then a good mentor has the ability to teach you about influence. Good marketing, good flexibility to problems in business.
Criteria for a good mentor:
- They will have been successful at what you are attempting to do
- Seasoned in business
- Open-minded and positive attitude
- Ability to influence others based on their results
- Problem solver
- Willingness to teach and mentor others
- Willingness to learn and grow themselves ( no one has all the answers)
- Challenges you and pushes you forward
- Encourages you and tells you to reward yourself when you’ve done well
These are some of the important points I can look for. Because they are values I want to emulate. Values I want to repeat in my own business. What should my attitude be like? Why should anyone want to mentor me?
How to get a mentor:
- Be teachable
- Use discernment (not everyone has the right answers)
- Be proactive and ask, don’t sit and wait for a mentor to fall in your lap.
- Practice what you get preached. Learn for yourself too.
- Screen potential mentors. Let go of people who are not the right fit for you.
- Show commitment
- Take good advice
I certainly don’t have to do this by myself. As this process can often be kind of lonely, it is important for me to venture out there and to find someone who can assist me on this incredible journey that is entrepreneurship.
Until tomorrow, dear Diary.