Have you ever had a great mentor?
We don’t get through life alone.
We have parents, teachers, bosses, (for me) the military, and others that play a more formal role.
But we also have those that “take us under their wing”.
Sometimes we seek it; other times they find us.
I’m not going to debate the terms mentor (longer-term, less outcome-based) vs. coach here.
It used to be that we could point to one person as our mentor.
Over the past 20 – 30 years it’s become common to have multiple mentors that help us in different ways. The concept of reverse mentoring is now pretty commonplace.
What can/do mentors do?
- Show others the way (the organization, your career, skills)
- Provide support and be an anchor
- Champion them (referrals, introductions, celebrate)
Who have mine been? I’ve had plenty:
- My Dad (“Don’t burn any bridges”; “Use every scrap of time”)
- Roger Murtha (trumpet, music, life)
- Wayne Carter (Coast Guard, story about him in an upcoming blog)
- Dr. Vince Patton (training, performance, leadership)
- Dr. Margo Murray (mentoring – as she is the “Queen of Mentoring”)
- Cheryl Hilvert (local governments)
- Nick Molfino (business and reverse mentoring)
Who have yours been? What did they give? What did you use?
Did the mentoring you received, inspire you to mentor others?
I feel that not enough organizations have mentoring programs (formal, informal, or a mentoring culture). Hopefully this post inspires you to do more as a mentor and to encourage your organization to do more.