Mentorship explains what it is, how to determine when you need a mentor and how to select a mentor.
Peer mentors are quite common, but I did not have to look far to select Paul Records. Not because he was SVP of Human Resources at the time, but because he is someone I highly respected and could emulate.
According to wikipedia, mentorship is defined as follows:
...is a personal developmental 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, but have a certain area of expertise.
After attending Strategic Thinking at Smith College in Northampton, MA, I was encouraged to select a mentor at a senior level within the company.
I was at a stage in my career that I needed to get a broader understanding of the company and develop the ability to think more strategically.
Prior to asking a senior leader to serve as a mentor, I made sure to talk it over with Bruce, who was my boss at the time. It was important to me that he was in the loop on what I was planning to do. I did not want him to be blindsided.
My mentor, Paul Records, shared the Top 5 Traits/Things to look for when selecting a mentor:
Before saying "Yes" to a request to be a mentor, Paul recommends you ask the following questions:
Before Paul agreed to be my mentor, he talked it over with my boss. Boy, I sure am glad I talked it over with Bruce first. That way, there were no surprises.
Mentors can come from all levels within the organization and can prove very helpful both personally and professionally. Choose wisely.