How to Find Business Mentors

November 22nd, 2009 Posted in Business, General Finance

We all need to have mentors if we have to reach some goals. Mentors are there to guide us along the way. They have achieved success in their endeavors and so they can teach us the do’s and don’ts that we should accomplish in order to mimic their success.

Now that you’ve chosen your business, it’s time to choose your business mentors and your team. If you were planning to climb Mount Everest next year, wouldn’t you want to speak with someone who had survived the journey to the top? You’d be surprised how many people, starting to climb up their own financial mountains, ask the advice of people who are languishing below sea level. It doesn’t occur to these climbers that their advisors have little or no firsthand experience.

Kiyosaki said that the world is full of S- Self Employed quadrant types trying to tell others how to enter the B or I quadrant. Seek out a mentor who “walks the talk”—someone who has already achieved what you would like to achieve. For instance, you would not want someone who achieved his or her success in real estate to necessarily become your mentor for building a business to sell car supplies.

As you begin, you’ll also need a team of business mentors and advisors. You should not risk the ordeals of building or investing in businesses without the expert help of others.

Rich Dad Tip:

“You don’t need to know every answer, but you do need to know who to call for the answer.”

Find a Business Mentor

Amateurs might not have mentors, but professionals do. One of the most important steps you can take upon entering the B- Big Business Owner quadrant is to set aside any discomfort you might have about asking for help. Seek out role models and learn from them.

Fishing for prospects isn’t all that difficult. It’s a matter of swallowing your pride, working up your courage, and approaching people. Business people are busy but they are generally willing to share their success stories. Many talented folks in the B and I quadrants are willing to lend a helping hand. You can find them out through the following avenues:

  • Successful business people that you know. They may know someone who has succeeded in the business you have chosen and be willing to introduce you.
  • Your local civic and volunteer organizations. Join several organizations and you will meet others who may have experienced success in the very business you are starting.
  • Your local newspaper and local TV news station. Start by looking for successful people in your own backyard. Which of them do you admire and would you like to approach?
  • Your local chamber of commerce. Your chamber of commerce and other local business organizations sponsor classes, seminars, and social events for you to meet potential mentors.
  • The business department of a community college near you. Community colleges often offer mentoring programs in association with local businesses.

Perhaps the easiest way to convince someone to mentor you is the direct approach. Don’t hesitate to call or write. Be polite. State clearly what you want and why you’ve thought of this person. You may be surprised at the response. Chances are your candidate mentor will be flattered by your interest and, like most people, will enjoy talking about what he or she knows best. You might suggest having lunch together. If this pans out, go prepared, and pay the bill. You’re conducting an interview of sorts. Do what the professionals do and write your questions out beforehand.

Once you’ve found a business mentor. . .
You probably won’t get all the information you need after a single meeting. What you want to do is establish an ongoing relationship. You want a business mentor who will teach you everything, then be available for support once you’re on your own. The problem is, what’s in it for the mentor? Why should this person bother to take you under his or her wing? While it may be true that at this time your resources are limited, that doesn’t mean you have nothing to offer.

Rich Dad Tip:

“What are you willing to give in exchange for receiving guidance? Your relationship with your mentor is based on the simple concept of exchange.”

Find out what your mentor needs. Fortunately for you, it’s unlikely to be money, since this person is already financially successful. Feel out your mentor. In exchange for information and training, offer whatever you can in the way of help. The possibilities are endless, and of course depend on the nature of the business and your own field of expertise.

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