Photos by LA PHOTOGRAPHY
Hi everyone I am excited to share another Work Wednesday post with you all. The last 3 have done really well and it is something extra that I love writing about other than my typical fashion post. I don’t know about you but I feel like this year has gone by extremely fast. As you know I had a lot of changes this year and one being that I moved downtown in a new job rotation in February. The past year has taught me so much about not only myself, but about networking tips as well. You can never network enough and the most important thing about networking is potentially leading to a promotion down the way. One of the most important things that have kept me sane, positive, and in the right direction, is having a mentor. I can’t say this enough but finding a good mentor is the number one work tip that I would recommend. This is even for those that don’t have a 9-5 job. I think everyone needs a mentor in order for them to get guidance to reach their goals and aspirations.
Why a Mentor?
- They Will Lead You In the Right Direction: When I started my current job that I am in right now I felt completely lost. I was in a brand new role not knowing what I was doing or anything really. Everyone was always so busy so a lot of time I found myself being productive and taking initiative by trying to understand the business and even googling things. Sometimes I felt like I wanted to quit honestly because I was not happy, and was super confused not only in my life but in my career as well during this time. Once I established a mentor they immediately led me in the right direction. They were able to help me on everyday questions I had and know what would be of best interest to me. This could be anything from my current job tasks to my leadership skills in general.
- They Provide Feedback: One thing that I have loved about having a mentor is they provide honest and helpful feedback. Everytime I am unsure about something in my job or just in general, I know that I can count on my mentor to help me in my decision. They coach you on your development so they already know what your strengths and weaknesses are. I go to mine sometimes on a daily basis whether it is a finance question or question on my development plan and some of my goals. I know that by talking to them I will feel more confident in my career.
- They Want to See You Succeed: It is a honor to be someone’s mentor and have that much confidence and hopefulness in talking to someone about anything that could possibly happen in their career and in life in general. You get so close to your mentor and they want to see you succeed. Throughout conversations and creating a relationship with your mentor and then seeing you excel in whatever you do puts a smile on their face. If it doesn’t well maybe the mentor is not a perfect fit for you after all, which leads to the next tip.
- One Size Doesn’t Fit All: People can want to be your mentor, but sometimes it is just not the right fit. I have been in this position before and it was not until I was paired with someone else that I truly understood what a mentor was and the potential that they could bring on my life and career. It might take a couple of people before you really get a mentor that you can trust and feel comfortable with. This is someone that can take on lots of different roles including your friend, cheerleader, or your biggest critic as well. It might take a couple of different people before deciding on someone.
- They Keep Things Confidential: You will want to have a mentor that you can trust and honestly can talk to them at any given point and they can keep things confidential. If they don’t then that completely breaks the trust that you would have with this individual. Sometimes I feel like it is a therapy session when I am confiding with my mentor. I might have had a bad day or am confused and need guidance on what I am doing with this certain task. They are the ones that I know will have my back and keep things between us, which is such a good trait to have.
- They Can Get You to That Next Level: This goes hand in hand with them wanting to see you succeed. They know your strengths and weaknesses and know what bothers you and where you want to be next. By having these conversations with your mentor they are also able to be an active voice in getting you to that next level in your career. Having someone that can back you up on your successes so far and the potential you have is huge for getting to that extra mile in the work place. When people know you from others and you have that positive image it makes it 10 times better for your career.
- You Can Have Several Mentors: I remember a previous co-worker when I started working in the corporate world 5 years ago always talking about his mentor and I was thinking maybe I need one of those. Well he was probably my first mentor and since then I have had several that I can count on through thick and thin. I have about 5 mentors and 2 that I meet with on a daily or weekly basis. They all serve different purposes and all give different insights into my development plan. It is nice to see different perspectives and also to see where several opinions end up being the same on certain situations. My mentors also range in ranking as well. Some of my mentors are my peers and some are in management and at a VP level. I think getting guidance and support and actively talking with people at different levels really helps shape a person into what they ultimately can be. This also helps when you start looking to land a promotion too which I wrote about.
- They Should Always Have Time: One of my mentors once told me that if your manager or anyone for that manner doesn’t have enough time to mentor or coach you, then their priorities are completely wrong. I couldn’t agree more and never really thought of that concept. Being a mentor means being their for guidance, support, a friend, and always being honest. I understand that we are all busy but being a mentor to someone can be the deciding factor if they fail or succeed. It can also be the deciding factor if they stay in a certain situation too.
- You Should Be One Too: Not only should you have a mentor, but offering to be one to someone else is just as great. Over the last 2 months my co-worker and I are now supervising these interns that come to our building during the week. They are in high school and are at an age right now where they aren’t sure what they want to do and are learning some of the most important life skills that they can right now. I am always there as a mentor and want them to feel comfortable coming to me. I try to make it a point to help others at work and give guidance or offer my assistance whether someone needs it or not. You never know whether having a simple conversation with someone could motivate someone to completely do what they have been dreaming about their entire life. It is not always about giving advice but being a key listener as well.
I hope you enjoyed this post today and I hope you look back on my other Work Wednesday series. This is a topic that I have been wanting to write about for a while and I am so passionate about it. I never thought that I would be in the corporate world because I majored in Hospitality, but now I love it. Having a mentor is so important and no matter if you work from your house or you work in a large downtown building, I think it is important to have one. This is someone that you can go to for advice, trust, and networking that will help you get to that next phase in your life. Sometimes you would have never gotten there without the help of your mentor cheering you on and pushing you throughout the way.