The Importance of Mentors. That was the topic of conversation at The North Coast Women in Business Q & A session with Jay Dilley. Building on my last post, we delve deeper into the roles of mentee and mentor, and the value of mentorship.
JD: Why should I seek out a mentor? What does the mentee get out of the relationship?
JL: An advantage in your development and growth. You can reap their expertise and knowledge.
For me, it holds me accountable. I want to live up to their expectations and I don’t want to let them down. It drives me to keep moving forward and aim for goals that are higher than I would have thought possible for me to achieve. Even when I’ve doubted myself, having a mentor who believed in me gave me the courage to set goals that I never would have even dreamt as possibilities for myself.
“As a mentor you truly care about the mentee, and seeing them succeed and achieve their goals is very rewarding and gratifying”
JD: It sounds like a great deal for the mentee so what does the mentor get out of the relationship?
JL: That’s the best part. As a mentor you truly care about the mentee, and seeing them succeed and achieve their goals is very rewarding and gratifying. Depending on what the two individuals are looking to get out of the mentorship, you could be establishing a lifelong relationship.
Mentorships are the perfect opportunity to develop your own coaching and leadership skills.
It’s also a boost for the mentor’s career. Both mentees and their mentors are 20% more likely to receive a raise compared to those who do not participate in a mentorship program.
JD: What are your thoughts on having a mentor from outside of your company? Is it better to have an internal or external mentor?
JL: That’s a great question. Both options have their own unique benefits depending on what your expectations and goals are. It makes sense that a mentor from inside your organisation will understand the challenges and dynamics specific to your workplace. An external mentor will provide insight into the market and industry trends, and connect you to a broader network of key players.
I’ve found it tremendously valuable to have mentors from outside my organisation. As a Director sometimes I have to make tough decisions that aren’t always popular with all of our team and I’m not always liked for it. An external mentor will give you the outlet you need to candidly talk about the challenges you’re facing and provide unbiased perspective. Sometimes I just need to be reassured that I’m not going crazy!
JD: How do you establish a relationship with a mentor?
JL: Just ask! I was asked to be a mentor and I was incredibly honoured. We often feel that asking for a mentorship means we are being a burden, but remember that a mentorship is a mutually beneficial relationship.
Have you been in a mentorship? What do you think about the importance of mentorship? I’d love to hear!