Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Why do I Need a Mentor?

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Here's the part where I tell you all the fabulous reasons why you should not only read this blog but also hire someone (like me) to help you.

I could have a picture of two hands meeting in a handshake, or two business people sitting down to chat. Oh no. I've chosen something a little "edgier." Broken glass. 'Cause ya know, that's just what you may be feeling like you're walking on. (Hmmm...a song coming on?).

People generally come to me when they are starting a new business, contemplating change, in the middle of change or in a crisis.

We're going to take some points here:
  • There may be big issues with the way your system works that is making things WAY harder for you than they should
  • You may not have "branded" your business in a way that gives you enough exposure to the right clients
  • You may have issues with prioritizing your time and don't know how to start over to fix it.
  • You feel like you need to clone yourself (see above).
  • You're thinking about starting an entirely new business.
  • You don't know if you're in the "right" business for you.
  • When you come across either a roadblock or a new opportunity, you ask the person sitting right next to you what they think.
I'm going to start with that last one because it's really the heart of the matter as far as I'm concerned:

When you come across either a roadblock or a new opportunity, you ask the person sitting right next to you what they think.

This is about getting advice, playing ideas of of another person, venting and looking for solutions. Depending on your personality type, you may go to another person to seek help or you may just ask yourself these questions and lose sleep. Even if that other person is your business partner, you may still need another ear. It's like a marriage where the two of you are used to a certain dynamic and you may need a third person to shake it up and point things out to you that you may be too close to see.

Personally, I know that if I ask my circle of friends and colleagues about something, I know what angle they're going to come at it from. In the back of my mind, I know what their approach is going to be. "Jane" who is a retailer will be talking about it from a retailers perspective, etc. The perspective of a business mentor is way more balanced. We work in many different industries and see some issues as industry specific and some as "you" specific. We get to know your way of doing things, see where you want to go and then find a way to get you there.

The more I look at the image I've chosen for this post, the more I do see how it directly relates to this topic. Glass ceilings, pushing out the windows, pushing beyond our confinement to get to the place where we want to be. Meanwhile, there's a bit of broken glass between here and there.

I'm not saying it won't be a little painful at times, but allow me to lay my cloak down for over here....

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