Two factor approach to select the best mentor for your business.
11th, September 2017 - Startup community
Recently I was been called by an educational institute to deliver a talk on Startup as a career. The agenda of the guest talk is to inspire the student community to Start something of their own and be an independent person.
There was a group of student who are interested to start something of their own but they were not getting the right support and direction to go ahead and execute the idea. They were literally looking for some supporting hands the join them in their journey and guide them properly. But they had some hindrance on approaching the mentor who can guide them properly. This is because they have seen many fake clone people who are just posing as a mentor and posting all plagiarised content from the internet to get the attractions.
They obviously do not want to get in to trap and fail in the business. They were worried on how to approach the mentor and what are the things they should keep it in their mind when they approach the mentors.
This made me to think a while as the problem is something serious and how to avoid the mistake and create awareness in Startup founders on approaching the mentors?
For me mentoring should be like open book exam in the school. The simple reason is mentoring is a like to teaching a students and enlighten him about the subject. This practice is academic help student to understand the subject very well and apply in the life. I am preaching on open book exam because being a student understanding the concept is very important and not learns by hearting and applying in the exam room. We follow some the concept “Open Book Exam” in our academic. This is very simple method where we allow the students to take the text book inside the exam room and keep it open during the exam. But the cliché is the questions are framed based on the base concept. What happen in many exams is questions are framed based on the text book format and students will study the same and just reproduce it in the exam and score good marks. But fundamentally they may be weak and not in a position apply the same in the life. This open text book allows the students to memorise the basic concept and help them to solve the problems in the exam.
Mentoring is similar to open text book exam. We should not teach entrepreneur how to solve the particular problem, instead make sure their basic fundamental in business is strong and take their own decision in the business.
The mentoring process should consider two elements i.e. Objectives of the mentoring and mission of mentoring process.
When you approach any expert to take the mentoring help from him, you need to follow the process which will help you to save you from the disasters moment in the future.
Objective of a mentoring is to understand what mentor knows and his knowledge about the business. Do some homework before you meet a person about his back ground and his status in social life. Because unless he has some expert in the business and spent his life in the business how can he guide you? Be ready to ask some question to him and observe how he tries to solve your queries and give you the right information.
Mission of mentoring is to understand where you will stand after taking the guidance from the expert. It should not happen that to after taking the proper mentoring from expert you fail completely.
Being a mentor one should not help entrepreneur in his day to day business. His interference should be limited to the situation and also he should try to involve entrepreneur to solve the problem.
How open book exam work in school same process need to be taken care in the mentoring process. Mentor should teach the basics of business and its fundamentals. So that entrepreneur will apply these fundamentals whenever he encounters the tough situations.
A true mentor who is very passionate about the business will never ditch you at any time during the crisis. He spend time and share knowledge of wisdom with an entrepreneur who is willing to take up the open text book exam in the business journey.
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