Do I need a Mentor?

At that point I realised that I really could use someone to talk things through. I was looking for a fresh set of eyes, new insights, and somewhat of a challenge to get me out of my usual way of acting and thinking.

Mentorship is a relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person helps to guide a less experienced or less knowledgeable person. The mentor may be older or younger than the person being mentored, but he or she must have a certain area of expertise. It is a learning and development partnership between someone with vast experience and someone who wants to learn (Farren, Eight Types of Mentor).

Mentoring is a process that always involves communication and is relationship-based. It can be relevant to work, career, entrepreneurship, or professional development. Mainstream business literature adopted the terms and concepts, promoting them as pathways to success for all career climbers. High-potential mentoring programs are used to groom up-and-coming employees deemed to have the potential to move up into leadership or executive roles.

Relationship is key

The relationship and trust between Mentor and mentee or apprentice are a critical component. It is important to let the mentee feel comfortable talking to you about anything. Business Mentoring can have real benefits, for instance for entrepreneurs, according to investigations in the practice of business mentoring (EPS-PEAKS). Other studies found that mentoring relationships itself (instead of the presence or design of a formal mentoring program) had a strong impact on attitudes (Academy of Management). It has been claimed that new employees who are paired with a mentor are twice as likely to remain in their job, than those who do not receive mentorship (Getting good people to stay).

Mentoring (or Coaching) programs can be found in- and outside companies and organisations. Read more about the Influencers and Thought Leaders of Mentoring, Talent Development, and Gender Diversity from Brainport.