Having a trusted ally in the workplace can be the difference between excelling in your industry and slamming face first into a career plateau. To maximize your professional growth potential, selecting a mentor to support you and share industry expertise that helps you navigate your career path is a feasible option. Picking that right-fit individual can be a struggle if you donât know where to start. Consider these qualities before you close the deal on your new mentor relationship.
Sheâs Been There Done That
To secure a beneficial mentor-mentee relationship, research someone who has achieved noteworthy accomplishments in your desired industry. Pick a mentor who has your dream job and has rightfully owned the title of a âlady boss.â Reputation and perception hold a lot of weight. A mentor with a broad range of victories under her belt will be able to give true-to-life examples of obstacles sheâs faced and offer strategies to overcome them.
She will reassure you that your overwhelming feelings and anxiety will be a distant memory as you continue to learn and grow. A credible mentor will have a positive attitude that calms your fears and is flexible enough to consider your suggestions for achieving real success in your field. If sheâs not likable or there is no personal connection, keep looking.
Sheâs Open To Sharing Ideas
Be careful not to fall in love with a mentor at first glance. Success doesnât automatically guarantee the willingness to exchange ideas. A woman who fears competition may assume youâre vying to eliminate her space on the A team. The ideal mentor wonât be threatened by an up and coming rock star. Sheâll be proud and most likely flattered that youâve chosen her to aid in your professional progress.
Be sure to get a clear understanding of her availability and expectations. An informal mentorship may involve as needed check-ins and tips, while a more formal setup may require documentation, projects, and evaluations. Your best mentor will help you recognize areas for improvement and will push you out of your comfort zone. She wonât let you make excuses for sub par performance. Sheâs serious about the mentorship and will empower you to be the best.
She Loves Her Field
It is highly possible to be good at what you do and still lack passion and drive. A professional with a lackluster approach to achieving goals is in no shape to lead or mentor a newbie. Steer clear of this type when seeking a mentor. The right mentor is gregarious, empathetic and enthusiastic â and her drive to succeed is contagious. During discouraging times, sheâll throw a life jacket to save you from your fears.
Your perfect mentor is not only advocating for your learning and development, but sheâs also enrolling in continuing education and attending conferences to gain access to the latest industry trends. Maybe sheâs written a book or two and can recommend her most favorite reads. A great mentor takes pride in tactfully offering constructive feedback and uplifting you. Make a list of whatâs most important to you and find someone who closely fits that mold.
A winning mentorship can be life changing. If you poll the most successful leaders in your field, theyâll credit their success to a mentor or role model. A satisfying mentor partnership will encourage you to hold fast to your career dreams and remain accountable for accomplishing the objectives youâve outlined in the roadmap to your end goals.
Ashley Watkins, Career Coach and Nationally Certified RÃ©sumÃ© Writer with Write Step Resumes, LLC, provides high-quality rÃ©sumÃ© writing, interview preparation and career coaching services to help job seekers get more interviews and salary offers. She can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,Â Pinterest,Â or viaÂ www.WriteStepResumes.com.
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