The Benefits of Business Mentoring
Working with a mentor is one of the most effective ways to develop yourself as a leader. Having the support and guidance of a mentor provides unrivalled opportunities for your personal development. You get to tap into someone else’s knowledge and expertise to help you develop both yourself and your business or department’s performance and productivity.
It’s a rewarding experience for both parties. Often the mentor and the mentee both benefit from the mentoring relationship, which is built on mutual respect and communication. And there are benefits for the business, too.
Here are some of the key benefits:
Benefits of business mentoring for mentees
1. Advice and Guidance
Sometimes as a new leader or business owner, every day can feel like an uphill battle. You’re very aware of where your skills gaps are, but may not know how to close them, or which ones to focus on first.
Having a mentor can help. You have someone who’s been through it themselves that you can ask questions and get some honest and useful advice. Hearing about your mentor’s early career experiences will help you realise that the struggles you are going through now are completely normal.
Your mentor can help you take a step back from the overwhelm and guide you towards focusing on the things that will have the most impact.
They can also provide an empathetic ear when you need to vent frustrations that you can’t share with your employees, and help you find solutions to the issues causing you stress.
2. Develop new skills
A mentor can help you develop the essential skills that you need to grow your business or leadership practice. They’ll also be able to help you choose the best way to learn – whether it’s formal training or hands-on experience.
3. Grow your network
Building a network of business contacts can prove invaluable. A strong business network can give you the edge when recruiting, and people with the right expertise to call on if you need someone with a particular skill in the future. It also provides business opportunities for you, if someone in your network is in need of a skill or service you can provide.
Your mentor will likely have their own business network, and as their mentee, you will potentially be able to meet some of those people and add them to your own network.
4. Build your confidence
As a business owner or leader, sometimes it’s hard to know if what you’re doing is the right thing. Are you making the best decisions, or is there something you could do better?
Most of us tend to be very self-critical, and while we can reel off a list of weaknesses, we’re not always sure of our strengths. A business mentor can give you the feedback you need to confirm where you’re doing well, as well as what you need to focus on improving.
Having that feedback from someone experienced can be just the boost you need to develop confidence in your own abilities.
Benefits of business mentoring for mentors
1. Exposure to new ways of looking at things
As a mentor, you might have been a leader yourself for a very long time, and you’ll have lots of experience to share with your mentee. But while experience is valuable, sometimes the fresh perspective that comes with being less experienced can give you insights on new solutions to old problems. As a mentor, you’ll find that sometimes your mentee will help you see things in a new light, and enrich your own leadership practice.
2. Extend your network
Just as your mentee will gain access to your network, you will also gain access to theirs. The relationship you build with them could provide you with valuable business contacts, now and in the future, to help you develop and grow your own business while supporting theirs.
3. Job Satisfaction
There’s something incredibly rewarding about playing a part in helping someone develop their business or career.
Taking an active role in someone’s career development can be one of the most inspiring things you ever do.
Personally, I love my voluntary role as a mentor for aspiring business owners via the Greater Manchester Business Growth Hub.
Being a mentor is something I find incredibly energising. I’m always so inspired by the people I support. It’s wonderful to see the people I mentor flourish and grow in ability and confidence.
However, it’s not always just new leaders or aspiring business owners that need a little guidance and support. As a mentor / executive leadership coach, I help senior leaders at all points in their career to develop the focus, confidence, and resilience to grow as a leader and achieve the results that matter to them.
If you’re ready to grow as a senior leader and want to learn more about mentoring / executive coaching, get in touch with me today?