Between Mentors’ & Mentees’ – Five (5) Lessons Worth Sharing
from Managing Americans.com 27 Mar 14 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
The Importance of Mentors. “Do you ever wish you had the Donald Trump, Bill Gates, Jeff Bazos, Larry Page, Sergey, or Zuckerberg as a Mentor or trusted Advisor? Me, too” said Post Author Sherri Petro, VP. I could have used a conversation with one of them recently. Ironically, it was because I was asked to participate in a Mentoring event for young professionals a few months back. Mentoring continues to be a hot topic – and for good reason. Mentees [the person Mentored, not Men-Tees – the T-shirt, Wiz4.biz] seek ideas, tips & secrets to success. Mentors seek to share words of wisdom from their experience and help the Mentee to make better decisions.
What does a Mentor offer ??? As for me, I had to come up with a gem or two that I could share with these Mentees as emerging Leaders. What should I say? I thought hard. I agonized. I spent far too much time coming up with the required text. This prompted me to think about my own and other people’s Mentoring experiences. What could we all learn as we seek to enhance our decision skills? I canvassed colleagues of each generation [Traditionalists (born 1925-45), Baby Boomers (‘46-64), Gen X (‘65-80) & Gen Y(‘80+) on their mentoring experiences and counsel. Here are some of my favorite sentiments:
1. Ask the Provocative Questions.
One CEO received a cosmic 2 by 4 on channeling ego, by a Mentor who posed an excellent question about what he really wanted. As the CEO of a non-profit that had a great deal of success & growth, he was dealing with a board leadership transition that was not going well. He was sure all he needed to do was to help the other person understand just how wrong they were. He was asked the question, “Do you want to be right or keep your job?” and told that he might have to choose. He continues, “That simple question really pulled out the complexities of ego, and whether as CEO, I would be able to put my Ego aside for the greater good. It was explained that if each of us give 50% and meet in the middle, that puts half the responsibility on the other person. That’s half that we have no control over. Rather, if I was committed to success, why not do everything I could to ensure it, even giving 100%? This seems like such a simple observation, but I was rooted in my belief of being right, my Ego didn’t allow me to see how much power I actually had. To this day, when I find my Ego keeping me from exploring new ways of doing things, I nudge myself along by asking this question “Do I want to be right or get along?”
2. Tell a Story that Sticks
Former Chief of the HIV, STD & Hepatitis Branch of Public Health Services for the County of San Diego, was advised to meet with a very effective local Advocate early in his career. It turned out to be an invaluable meeting. He still remembers the story that was told about how the mentor recognized an opportunity and jumped on it, creating success for both, his nonprofit organization & the business he approached, for support. The “cause” marketing that was created that day, may well have been the first of its kind! The lesson of the story stayed with him during his entire career. “I learned the value of creating a win/win situation. I still look for creative solutions because of this amazing mentor.”
[ 3. the Right Reason, 4. Give & Get, 5. Have Courage, Conclusion, Your Turn in Premium Content ]