At the beginning of the year my family decided to sponsor our first child from Honduras. The country is bordered by Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua. Honduras is home to several important cultures and their population exceeds eight million. They are most notable for their production of minerals, coffee, tropical fruit, etc…
Our child’s name is Kevin and he’s an eight year old boy that lives with his mother in a very modest surrounding. He has an infectious smile and loves to plays football. His favorite food is spaghetti and he has a dream to become a doctor. The opportunity to sponsor Kevin has changed my family’s life in many ways. We are mentoring him through our letters and cards of support, but also keeping his picture at the dinner table allowing us to always have him in the forefront of our mind.
In business, when you think of sponsoring or mentoring someone what comes to your mind? An article that I read in “Entrepreneur” has some notable tips in finding and becoming a Business Mentor.
- Determine your needs. Keep in mind that your mentoring needs will shift as you develop your business and understand what kind of mentor you want.
- Take time to network. Networking isn’t just important for finding customers. It’s also vital for finding a mentor.
- Listen more, talk less. Given your enthusiasm for a mentor, it may be hard to stay silent. But to find a mentor, you need to listen – a lot.
- Be “mentorable”. If you come off as someone who knows everything – or thinks you do – many people will back away.
- Don’t overlook nontraditional mentors. Some mentors may help you with their knowledge through books, seminars, speeches, etc.
- Thank your mentors. When people help you, intentionally or unintentionally, let them know.
- Pay it forward. You may never be able to pay your mentors back, but you can recognize what they have done by becoming a mentor for others.
Most recently at REMEDI, we have had the opportunity to mentor a few new clients and help them navigate through the B2B Integration process. Within their IT departments we have mentored them through the process of EDI assisting them with upgrades, mapping projects etc... This was mainly due to limited internal EDI expertise, internal staffing changes and new additions to their team. The rewards have been beneficial for both of us. In mentoring our clients, we have been able to successfully complete projects and build relationships with bridges of trust for future opportunities.
Check out the 2015 National Mentoring Summit in Washington, DC at http://www.mentoring.org/2015_national_mentoring_summit.