As we make our way through life, we tend to gather a group of individuals that we feel we can rely on, be them our pastor, an influential professor, or even our grandmother. All of these types of people offer us guidance along our journey. They have wisdom, experience, and age, that if we give them the time, will help to guide us and hopefully keep us from making mistakes but also offer encouragement to make our life a little easier. The same goes for entrepreneurs. Asking a successful business owner to provide advice is a hard pill to swallow. Yes, you are the boss of your business but in 2013 80% of CEO’s had some form of mentorship. Mark Zuckerberg had Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs had Mike Markkula, and so on. There is no shame. Just as we ask our pastor for spiritual guidance, our professor for his/her educational expertise, and our grandmother for her lessons on life, we also need guidance throughout our business journey. Here are a few tips on how having a mentor can help you succeed as an entrepreneur. Hope you enjoy Cathy’s Tuesday Tip! ~Cathy
You can read book after book by numerous successful people in your field. Are they telling you EVERYTHING? No. Some things are too personal. Having a one on one relationship with your mentor offers you time to get to know each other. Once that happens they may offer advice on a personal level that they may not have told you without getting to know you. Your mentor would not have taken you on if he/she did not want you to succeed. Their experience is one of your most valuable resources.
A mentor can be a great success by helping you grow and allowing you to tap into their professional connections. They are investing the time in molding you into a successful business person. They will want to give you access to influential people in your field that you may not have had the opportunity to meet otherwise.
A mentor can offer life lessons through the mistakes that they have made to deter you from making the same errors hopefully. If and when you do have a problem they will be there to reassure you and encourage you to keep going and get past the problem. They will be able to offer helpful advice to ensure your success. Depression is quite high among business owners, especially for those without a mentor.
Having someone guide you through the ups and downs has a positive effect on young business owners. Knowing that someone is invested and believes in you and your business gives you the confidence that you will succeed. Above talent and ability, having self-confidence correlates directly with having a successful career/business. Having that person in your corner believing you can contribute to that confidence.
The sad truth is that lots of businesses fail. In fact, according to SBA, 30% of new businesses won’t survive past two years, and then 50% of those who do survive won’t last the next five years. Those numbers are scary. There is a bright light, though. Entrepreneurs who are actively involved in a mentorship have a much higher success rate. 70% of mentored businesses last longer than five years. Put your ego to the side and search for a respected individual in your field that has proven his or her success. Their experience could be the difference in your business’s success in the years to come.
I hope you enjoyed Cathy’s Tuesday Tip this week. To view more of Cathy’s Tuesday Tips, visit our blog.