Top 5 reasons to get a mentor
Top 5 reasons to get a mentor
It sounds easy enough: “Get a mentor!” We hear it all the time in academics, self-improvement blogs and videos.
And the many reasons for getting one seems reasonable and self-explanatory. They offer advice, can provide resources and networking opportunities, and can set an example to follow.
That sounds great, but it doesn’t dig into the real story of what mentorship can do for you.
How do we really, truly benefit from having one?
What they don’t teach you in school
School — at any level — is mostly about learning how to learn. Most programs will teach you the foundations you need to know to succeed in your industry. But for the most part, you are honing your skills at learning new things. The practical realities of the workplace in 2023 and beyond will need a lot more preparation.
So we’ve put together our top five reasons why a mentor is so invaluable and why you need to find one NOW and not later:
1. They’ll help you refine your goals for post-graduation
Do you even know where to start to achieve your goals?
You had an idea about what you wanted to do in your career. You’ve worked hard and will have a piece of paper that says you’re qualified to do something. Now what?
A mentor can help you organize your thinking about the future. What to expect (let’s face it, you’re at the bottom and must work your way up!) and how to be better prepared for what's ahead. Mentors are great sounding boards. And having someone who’s “been there, done that” can be a great resource.
2. They’ll give you a realistic view of your strength and weaknesses
How surprised have you been at how tough some of those classes have been? Having a mirror in a mentor can be very helpful in identifying where you shine and where you need to hone your skills. It can save you much grief in the grind of learning those hard lessons all on your own.
3. They’ll teach you to handle constructive criticism
We know you’ve heard this, but it will be more challenging from here on out, no matter what you create in this world. And your future bosses will have high expectations and a low tolerance for mistakes. By working on this with a mentor, you will be prepped and ready for those tough conversations and more able to manage it well when a boss gives you harsh feedback.
4. Connections, connections, connections!
The work world has become a very challenging, competitive space. So unless your last name is Musk or Winfrey, you will have to work hard to get noticed and make a name for yourself.
When you apply for jobs, the hard reality is that thousands of others have also put an application in. Having a mentor will help you develop other professional relationships and connections that can help your name rise to the top of the pile.
Put another way, would you rather be a team of one or many when it comes to achieving your future goals?
5. Learn what it takes to get ahead
Your mentor has seen it all. They’ve had career highs and lows; they’ve been through tough interviews, paralyzing criticism, great success and job change. They know how tough the job market is and can provide frank views on what it takes to not only survive but thrive.
View the feedback you get from a mentor as a gift. A gift that will keep on giving long into the future. Your future self will thank you!
Are you an Indigenous student looking to get a mentor? We happen to have many! Click here to learn more and join our program.