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Posts Tagged ‘mentor’

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The world has probably seen successful start-ups at a local level being managed and run by one or several people. However, expansion and growth are impossible without a team of people working for you, and if you want your business to move from a local to a national or even an international level, you will need to invest in people. In one of his recent posts, Robin Sharma states that you can triple the growth of your organisation, but for that you will need to triple the number of people working in it.

However, taking people on board is not enough to initiate growth. More people = more growth is a good formula, but it has some factors that define its success. One of them is motivation. If you want your team to achieve success, you will need to inspire them. Be the leader they have always wanted to have. Show them the right path and arm them with dreams. According to Robin, your team will have more motivation to achieve the goals of your business or organisation if the goals themselves are bigger and more ambitious.

It is true that you hire people for their skills and pay them to work, but there are times when money loses its value and importance and what your employees need is encouragement and recognition instead. An employee will only be happy if their job is challenging and rewarding (but not only financially). Therefore, you should never miss a moment to encourage someone you work with – this may take 5 minutes from your day but totally change theirs and significantly improve the quality of their work.

Cooperating with your employees on a daily basis will certainly result in knowing them very well. This is to say, not only knowing things about their personal life, but also knowing what and who they are and what they are able to do. This will inevitably lead to realising what they can become and do if someone inspires them – a realisation that will come to you rather than to them because it is easier to assess the people around you than to assess yourself. And if you are wondering who should inspire them to achieve their maximum potential – the answer is you. You can and should always try to inspire your employees and colleagues to always improve themselves.

Having said all this, it is obvious that “the quickest way to grow the sales of your business is to grow your people”. If you want to achieve the growth you deserve, you need to take on board more and more people, to train them, to turn them into the best professionals and team players and to constantly inspire them to become better in what they do. The growth of your business can have no limits if you realise that the stronger and more capable your team is, the better it is able to work and help you expand.

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To have or not to have – a mentor – that is the question.

What, you might ask, is mentoring? Mentoring is a partnership through which one person shares knowledge, skills, information and perspective to foster the personal and professional growth of someone else.

In short – “Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction.” John C. Crosby

But, you might ask, how do I find the right person to be my mentor? If you are already in the workforce ask if your company or organisation has an existing mentoring program. If there is no system in place, be brave and bold and personally ask questions in order to find the right person.

The right person will be someone you admire and has the skill-sets that you wish to develop. Don’t be afraid to ask somone directly. People feel honoured if you ask them to share their skill and expertise with you.

Think about other opportunities for mentors: your family and friends, people you admire, networking organisations or your university alumni. These are all good places to start looking. An important quality to consider is the time availability of your potential mentor – will they have the time to devote to assisting your career development?

You may want to have more than one mentor, one within the organisation you work for and one who is a more objective outsider to your workplace. The final step in the process is to approach the person concerned and invite them to be your mentor; you may wish to do this over a lunch date or a coffee.

Once you and your mentor start working together you will find great solace in having a professional sounding board and professional guide in your life. One day you too may be in a position to offer yourself as a mentor to a struggling star and share your own wealth of knowledge and insights.

You’ve got absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain from finding yourself a mentor!!

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meeting with a mentor

meeting with a mentor

Last week I mentioned my formula for an accountability meeting. A mentor (or perhaps even a coach) is also very helpful for growing your business. Fortunately, I recently met up with a local business person whom I’ve known for a while and held in high regard. She has agreed to be my mentor on a voluntary basis, much to my excitement. 

After meeting with my mentor, I’d like to share 5 reasons for having a mentor as already, only after one meeting, I can see the benefits.

  1. They can look at what you’re working on (which is bound to be lots of different projects) and provide an objective opinion about what is most important. When you’re in the thick of it, sometimes that is hard to see because everything seems number 1 priority. This brings that one thing into very sharp focus and a filter through which to view all your tasks.
  2. Assuming the person who has volunteered to mentor you has been in business longer than you, they can warn of pitfalls which they’ve experienced, so you can avoid them. eg. the risk associated with employing friends.
  3. They can also share resources they might have come across.
  4. Provides you with an opportunity to reflect on your business from the big picture perspective.
  5. When you explain what you’re doing to somone else, the actual verbalisation can reveal things to you.

Do you have a mentor or coach? If so, what benefits have you reaped? If not, what is holding you back?


Here’s to volunteer treasurers..

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Are you accountable to anyone in your business day? If you work for yourself, on your own, chances are you are accountable to only you. Don’t know about you, but that arrangement can become a bit dodgy as I can justify all sorts of things. Recently, whilst attending a workshop with Zoe Routh from Inner Compass it became obvious that I would benefit from having a mentor and an accountability buddy. So I found a friend who was willing to volunteer for this role and we’ve had our first get together. As there is no point meeting without some type of agenda I came up with the SMART formula to guide our discussion for the coming week.

Significant events coming up.
Meetings/development scheduled.
Achievement aims.
Roadblocks recognised.
Timeout plans.

I’ve put aside a new notebook to record these items each week for discussion and harrassing if I’ve postponed too many items “because things came up”. This will also allow me to celebrate progress and wins as they happen. Am looking forward to the first meeting tomorrow with my mentor to help with setting the priorities for back office, front office, marketing, administration, entrepreneurial tasks etc. What strategies do you have for staying on track?


 Here’s to volunteer treasurers..

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