Every business owner/president/general manager should have a mentor. If you think that as an owner you know it all, you’re wrong. You may be successful up to this point, but you will get to the point where you’re faced with decisions that could take you either way.
Here are 4 reasons to find a mentor:
- You need someone to tell it to you like it is. As an entrepreneur, you live in a bubble of your own thoughts. Your thoughts are a result of what you read, the conversations you have with others, things you may have seen on TV, etc. Someone in the past has influenced you into the way you think today. With a mentor, you need to find someone that will tell it to you straight, someone who does not have a vested interest in your business or your anticipated reaction.
- You need someone who thinks differently than you do. If you’re in the tire sales and service business, you may have been doing newspaper or print advertising, perhaps even TV advertising. Find someone who can deliver new ideas to you from outside the tire service business. Perhaps another entrepreneur or a business coach who can deliver new ideas on promotion, dealing with customers, scheduling customers or whatever.
- You’re not looking for a friend. A friend has a vested interest in your feelings. That doesn’t mean you’re looking for someone who is rude or heartless. You just need someone who doesn’t mind disagreeing with you and telling you why. Someone you’ve never known before but knows something about business, usually works out better.
- Confidant – if you have confidential matters to talk over with someone outside your business or executive team, find a mentor whom you can talk to on a confidential basis. Business owners don’t always have someone to share their inner most thoughts and feelings with. Finding a confidant can be extremely stress relieving.
Developing a relationship with a mentor is a sign of strength in an entrepreneur. Take care of yourself so you can take care of others. Mental alertness, comfort and acuity is key to operating a business. Whether you pay for a business coach who works in confidentiality or find someone you trust, make the move to ensure your success.
Paul Beaudette is an independent business coach with Leading Edge Business Strategies. His focus is on growing small businesses to better compete against national and global corporations.
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