A mentor plays a significant role in career growth. Effective mentoring can lead to a new job, promotion and even greater work-life balance.
At different stages of life, we tend to find friends who have greater insights from how much you should spend on renting an apartment to job searching or making a career switch.
So, what makes a good mentor? Let’s find out together.
1. Industry Knowledge and Expertise
Generally, a mentor is someone who has more working experience in the industry or career path you are interested to pursue. This individual should be able to guide you simply because they have been in the industry for a reasonable period of time to know what it takes to be successful and guide you to overcome common struggles working in a particular job or industry.
It is advisable to find someone who isn’t too senior or has lengthy working experience as it may be difficult for you to relate to them or the fact that their knowledge may not be as relevant in the modern workplace that is ever evolving.
2. Enthusiasm and Willingness to Invest in Others
This may be a no brainer but a good mentor is someone who is obviously willing to share their knowledge and expertise. Such a person is genuinely interested to ensure the knowledge gained in their course of employment to benefits others.
3. Ability to Give Constructive Feedback and Be Respectful
Finding someone who is respectful and equally gives you tough love when it is needed, makes all the difference. A mentor who is able to give you honest feedback and call you out on things that may potentially ruin your reputation at work is crucial. You are sure to make better decisions with such a mentor by your side!
4. Good listening skills and empathy
A good mentor is someone who not only tells you what to do but also listens to what you have to say. Find a mentor who is willing to listen to your perspective of things and ideas before giving their input rather than someone who is bent on imposing only their values and beliefs on you.
According to career coach, Brad Finkeldei on the importance of a mentor who is willing to listen – “they can have all the answers in their head, but if they’re not willing to listen to where you’re coming from, they’re not going to be able to steer you in the direction that you want to go.”
At the end of the day, it is important to remember that having a mentor doesn’t mean you lose your individuality rather you merely aspire to emulate your mentor’s skills and knowledge.