Career is one of the most important aspects of a person’s life. A major part of our happiness and sense of achievement depend on the success that we gain at our professional front. Right from being a toddler to being aware of what it takes to make a living, almost every individual spends a significant amount of their life learning to build their fantasy career. No wonder, growing up under a lot of pressure forced most of the millennials and post-millennials to join the rat race that could land them their dream jobs!!
However, what happens when one transition from an educational environment to a full-fledged workforce is intriguing. Most of us realize that things unexpectedly take a nosedive! This happens simply because, in order to be competitive in the market, one needs at least two to three years of experience that complement their education. The key to achieving this is for both the employer and the employee to come forward and bridge this gap. The solution lies in a mentoring process that is based on candor.
So does it mean that the mentorship programs should be like a perfect arranged marriage? Well, it’s not that simple. Of course, there has to be some structure but it also has to be flexible, mutual and open. Young professionals who are fashioned by a generation driven by technology and innovation, and whose minds are ingrained by an educational system that is focused on a feedback mechanism, definitely need the mentors at the workplace.
But mentorship is paramount for seasoned business professionals as well who would benefit immensely from being challenged and gain insight into working smarter or learning new interfaces that the new blood grew with. According to recruitment experts, by the year 2025, 3/4th of the global workforce would be comprised of millennials and post-millennials alone. This explains the importance of a kind of yin-yang mentorship where everyone involved are peers with different skill sets.
Mentoring is an art, and the highest form of any art can inspire people. But apart from inspiring and pushing someone in the right career path, what else can mentorship accomplish? Let’s look at a few other takeaways that can be shared by both mentors and mentees in a trusted mentorship.
- Improved leadership skills:
The willingness to step up and take the role of a mentor itself explains a person’s pro-activeness to come out of their comfort zone and work on guiding others. This is a key quality everyone tries to find in good leaders and management teams.
- Accelerated career progression:
With improved leadership skills, enhanced performance at work comes as a natural by-product. Demonstrating that you have improved someone else’s skills and helped them grow in their role is sure to be noticed by higher management and make you eligible for further promotions and perks.
- Multi-dimensional perspective:
You always learn new things when you collaborate with people coming from diverse educational backgrounds, experiences, and skills. Thus one can gain a multi-dimensional perspective to a particular situation or problem.
- Mental fulfillment gained by offering in good faith:
There is no joy as the joy of giving and nothing more fulfilling than seeing your mentees succeed in their career paths.
- Better communication skills:
To encourage, guide and explain to people in a “language” that they understand definitely needs crisp communication. This means you need to tailor your communication to match the recipients grasping ability so that it becomes effective, which in turn improves your own communication skills.
- Gain real-time and hands-on support:
Whenever faced with a challenging task in your career, you need not “reinvent the wheel”, as mentors can provide you with the support and guidance that you seek for practical problems or hindrances.
- Better networking:
Since mentors have interactions with many people and introduce you to their work network, this helps you widen your professional network as well.
- Better communication skills:
Communication is key to any successful endeavor. While being mentored, similar to your mentor you also work on communicating effectively.
- Distinguish goals and expectations based on reality:
With the lessons learned by your mentor in their prior experiences, they help you segregate goals and expectation with a sense of reality. You learn to manage your goals and keep your expectations in line with the career path you have chosen.
- The utilization of full potential:
A good mentor understands the full potential of his mentee and comes up with unique challenges and exercises to unleash this potential. Hence it is quite common for employees to turn a new leaf in their career when they find quality mentorship.
- Widen your horizon:
Understanding how an industry works and whether it suits your dreams and desires could take years. But under the guidance of a mentor, you can quickly learn how and where your current career might end up. Your mentor may even suggest alternate career paths based on their experience where you may be able to be the best version of yourself.
- Enhanced decision-making
Confidence instilled by your mentor empowers you with proper and timely decision-making skills.
Now that we have established why mentoring is important and how it benefits all parties, the question arises where/how to seek an appropriate mentor. Considering the number of people willing to guide you it could be difficult to find the right one. To address this obstacle you can:
- Instead of waiting for that perfect mentor to show up you try working along with a mentor having less experience but voluntarily willing to share their ideas with others. As they say, no experience and effort go unrewarded.
- Actively network and proactively participate in activities that could help you achieve your aspirations and puts you in the company of like-minded people.
- Take ownership and create your own opportunities. Remember that the world needs you but will not wait for you. So just don’t ask someone to be your mentor but follow their work. Imbibe visible qualities that you believe enabled them to smoothly transition from one level to other. Give something in return for using their ideas. Returns can be in the form of credits with positive comments on their blogs, or by starting a discussion online or offline on the qualities that you believe everyone must possess.
- Be flexible, resilient and demonstrate to your higher management that you value learning and development.
- Ask for a mentor! If you feel you could perform better with mentorship, ask for it. It is the squeaky wheel that gets the oil. But remember, squeak too much and the wheel gets replaced. So learn to balance your needs and your performances and communicate constructively to address your mentorship needs.
In today’s world of information, mentorship is perhaps more important than ever. With every aspect of our careers and technologies changing lightning quick, you definitely need the guidance to stay calm, grounded and learn how to keep pace while not losing yourself. Asking for help is not weakness, it is smart. As mentorship brings tremendous benefits to everyone involved, perhaps it is time that you donned the mentor’s hat or asks for that little bit of help and support. It could go a long way!
Are you ready to achieve success in your career and attain the results you’ve always wanted, but not sure how? Then click HERE to schedule a FREE Discovery Session with Coach Margaret!
Image Credits: Deposit Photos
Like Us on Facebook: Intuitive Professional Coaching
Join our Facebook Group: www.helpingwomencreatesuccessfulcareers.com