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Challenge your Mindset

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10 reasons why you need a mentor


In the working world, there is a subconscious acceptance that it is everyone for themselves, but this isn’t strictly true. Having guidance and some wisdom from a more experienced member of the team (or from within your industry) can prove invaluable.

  1. Emotional support

The old phrase “behind every man is a great woman” can be rewritten to “behind everyone is somebody”. We all come across difficult people, and having a mentor behind you means you can spill your emotions without letting them come out whilst confronting or handling these situations. Having them support you doesn’t mean they’re fighting your battles for you. It just means you can turn to them as you go through the problem. Having to deal with acrimony alone can be upsetting. For further support on interpersonal issues at work and managing work and home worries visit our Video Moods section for some bite sized empowering advice.

  1. Grapevine

If your mentor is in a particularly high position, they will be more aware of the future plans and upcoming projects in your company. They can alert you of any opportunities or warn you of some potentially controversial plans that help you prepare for what’s coming. Sometimes, no day at work is the same, and that becomes easier to handle if you have someone with inside information.

  1. Teacher

Your mentor will know what it takes to progress and will notice anything you’re doing that’s hindering you. They can listen your ideas before you trial them and give you that extra information or advice you need. They can make you aware of courses and schemes which will improve your skills or assess your strengths and weaknesses for you to help you move forward.

  1. Inspiration

Sometimes it’s hard to find motivation for work when you’re carrying out the more tedious tasks of the job. When empowering music, food treats and vision boards [The power of visualisation] won’t do it, a mentor can. Having contact with someone who is a proven success in your field will encourage you to persevere.

  1. Gateway

LinkedIn is a fantastic innovation in business, but nothing brings about the most impressive opportunities quicker than a mentor. Whilst LinkedIn is democratic and systematic in its networking, mentors do it the old fashioned, nepotistic way. If they have enough faith in you, they can connect you straightaway with the big names in your profession when you’re ready to move on to new experiences and peaks. This is a great idea if you have more humble beginnings in your field of work.

  1. Experience vs Theory

Literature has its advocates, but a book isn’t first-hand experience. Someone who knows the tips and tricks, including the not so politically correct, could be much more helpful. Literally not going ‘by the book’ could be the best decision you make.

  1. Dictionary

The mentor can sort the jargon, dissect any statement and knows the right things to say to the right people. If you’re great at the substance of the job, but lack in style, let a mentor show you how. It could be your way of getting a professional sheen on your work.

  1. Philosopher

Sometimes we get stuck in moral dilemmas at work. We might have a chance to usurp somebody for a promotion or we have to fire somebody. When right and wrong doesn’t seem to exist or balances out exactly, a mentor can help work you through your qualms and take the guilt away. Objective perspective on something causing you stress can be a great reliever. [Effective ways to reduce stress]

  1. Strictly business

The problem with family and friends is that their bias means they tell you what you want to hear, whereas a mentor has no personal connection, and will tell it how it is. You will be thankful, especially when it means you don’t have to take work home with you. If you don’t currently have access to either then join our community for free and share anonymously any issues in there.

  1. River

The mentor will be an old hand in the business and one last achievement for them could validate their life’s work, and their one last achievement could be you. Filtering down their knowledge and insight to someone who can carry on the good work ensures everything they achieved has a future after they retire. You need them because they need you.

The stigma against having a mentor is that it gives the illusion of dependence and weakness. You feel ashamed for needing help and not being to rely on your own resources and faculties to do your job, which is especially true in this modern world of apprenticeship schemes. These 10 reasons should prove why shame needn’t apply.


This article was contributed by Pink Moods.