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How To Find A Mentor

Discussion in 'Progress/Execution Threads' started by April, Feb 22, 2008.

  1. April
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    April New Contributor

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    Just wanted to get some feedback from others in reference to how they feel about mentorships and how they found a mentor if they have ever had one.

    Anyone who knows me will hear me talk about my "high five" which is my circle of, at least five, people that are my business associates. We mentor each other.

    Since I'm starting this post, I think one way to find a mentor is by networking at business events. Usually, you will run into a guru or two:notworthy:
     
  2. taichijedi
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    taichijedi Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    Re: How To Finding A Mentor

    I would definitely be interested in finding out about others mentor/mentoring experiences as well. I have been thinking about this lately and wanted to know what other think on the matter. Especially from people who have mentored, what were you looking for in an individual, what did you expect from them, did they live up to those expectations? What could they have done differently? Those kind of things I'm really curious about. Thanks in advance.
     
  3. Redshft
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    Redshft Contributor

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    Re: How To Finding A Mentor

    There are many good ones right here on this forum.
     
  4. PEERless
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    PEERless Bronze Contributor

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    Re: How To Finding A Mentor

    I am fortunate to have a successful entrepreneur (my dad) and a self-made real estate investor (my grandmother) naturally included in my family "network." I also take care of the home of a very powerful man in the financial world and I work with the ex-president of a huge jewelry company. These people are all valuable, and all have just fallen into my lap. I wish I could offer tips on finding great mentors. I guess just "be alert." They're everywhere.
     
  5. April
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    April New Contributor

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    You are so right, there are some good mentors right here on this forum! The only thing is that a mentor should be personal where you can "follow him/her at work" so to speak...and call them and they will walk you through any situation. It's hard to be an apprentice when you never see the person you are dealing with unless you only have questions that can be answered on a forum.

    Does anyone have any other examples of how the met their mentor or apprentice?
     
  6. SteveO
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    SteveO Legendary Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    A mentor is valuable but pysical accessability is not really required. I put my plan together and implemented it from books. Perhaps an argument could be made that the authors were my mentors but that would be a stretch.

    I think the best way to find one would be to have something to offer that would help. That may be time or drive. The ability to get certain things accomplished. Connections that might help the mentor. Etc...
     
  7. andviv
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    andviv Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    There are two reasons for me to spend time in this forum. One is to learn from many others here that have done what I am working to accomplish. I consider them my mentors in many ways.
    It is great knowing that I can pick up the phone and ask questions and get guidance when I need it. The reason for me to do this is that I just don't know anybody that has done what I want in my local area. The forum has allowed me to move forward with my plan and that is priceless for me.

    But I think I just answered a related, although not the original question. About the OP, I found my mentor in an internet forum. Then met him in person (had to travel 2,331 miles to meet him). Asked for guidance. When he asked me where I was in my path and what I had to offer I explained in detail who I was, what I had done, and what I wanted next.
    Maybe you are not ready for the mentor you thought was ideal, or maybe is the opposite, you outgrow your mentor and need somebody else at that point. I don't think it would be any good for me to go asking for Mr. Trump's advice on real estate deals when I only own a few units, don't you think?

    The only word of caution, and I mention it as I've seen it many many times, is that once you come looking for a mentor and s/he agrees to help you, you better do as s/he says. There is a reason why s/he is the mentor and you the grasshopper. If your mentor says read this book, do it. If your mentor says call this person for that advice, do that. If you think you know better then either you have the wrong mentor or you outgrew her/him.

    If you promise something, deliver. If you are invited to partner with your mentor, or to run a deal for her/him then you better be ready to jump at the opportunity and be there.
    If you waste your mentor's time then next time s/he will be too busy working on making up the time you made them waste in you.


    ************
    PS: Moved thread to this other section, I thought it was more appropriate
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2008
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  8. April
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    April New Contributor

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    I totally agree with you SteveO but do you have any advice for those who don't know how to properly help themselves to reaching their goals and feel like that face to face interaction? Outside of already knowing someone who has mentor potential and networking events where you meet new people, I don't know what else to tell others about how to find someone who are doing what it is that you want to do to become sucessful...well I have directed people to this forum which is an abondance of info.

    I get this question all the time and although I don't consider myself a mentor(yet) I am constantly motivating other who ask for help from me. ( I don't know why they do that because I'm not there yet)
     
  9. April
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    April New Contributor

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    andviv great advice!

    My personal story, as far as mentors go, is that I am one of those people that attract wealthy people so I'm always making a new friend. I have five friends, all of different backgrounds and sucess levels, that live here in DC and we all have a common goal of growth and aid each other in making it happen.

    Outside of my many business ideas and investments, I trade for a living so I have a trading mentor about 3 hrs away where I can call him, email him or even go see him if I need to discuss strategies or to get him work out deals that are at an advantage to me because he knew the other person personally. I was introduced to him by a woman I met at a social business event and it ended up being a good match.

    I also utilize this forum and other wealthy people that I have met, in specific fields, as mentors but I must say that I do appreciate being able to speak with them over the phone, email or in person because you do get more from the personal relationship...you also get hook ups that you may not have gotten unless you really knew that person of influence; which are very much so priceless.
     
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  10. SteveO
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    SteveO Legendary Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    I am the last person that should be responding to this thread. :smx4: While I enjoy talking about investments and giving advice, I am not bought in to the motivation and hand holding process. Someone once asked me to partner with them on a mentorship program that sells services. I just don't think I could give students their money's worth.

    In my past life as a manager in charge of a failure analysis lab, I had a lot of trouble understanding training needs. People always wanted training for equipment and processes. There were many instances of people who had extensive training just being able to adequately do their job. There was always someone that would come in and successfully pioneer the way with solutions to challenges. Frequently with less training.

    Training, education and other development are important. Plowing a path while learning and developing your own solutions is much more important in my opinion.

    I have had a number of people call me their mentor. I don't mind the title. But, in reality, these people are doing something for themselves and usually helping me to find solutions for my needs. I am aimed in certain directions. If someone jumps on to help and learns along the way, I guess that is a form of mentorship.

    One of the criteria that I have when helping people is that they have certain abilities. Lots of people ask for help evaluating apartment properties. How these questions are framed is important to me. Someone that has done some reading and planning usually understands the basics of the process. If a apreadsheet is tossed in front of me that has had some thought to it, I will usually take a look. In some cases where someone says something along the lines of "I stumbled across this deal and it looks like a good one". Key word "stumbled". Do they understand the location? Have they already evaluated comps? Have they seen all other properties that are for sale in the target area? If the answer is no, then I can't help.
     
  11. Edge
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    Edge Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Summit Attendee

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    I think the best way to find a mentor is to get active with your plan. Once you start doing, your eyes and ears open up a little bit more and your network expands. When I look at who I consider my mentor(s), I didn’t realize that they were my mentors at the time and I really wasn't looking for them to be a mentor.. In fact, one person that I sought out to be my mentor ended up being someone that I would have been better off never meeting.

    I do believe mentors are important and that they will help guide you through your plan and help you accelerate it, but so many people think that they need one to get started. I think if you get started, you’ll have many opportunities to come across mentors, and you will be able to make much better use of everyone’s time. I also don’t think it is a good idea to advertise you need a mentor or that you are looking for a mentor to help you get started.

    This is just my opinion based on personal experiences, there are probably many other here that disagree with me.
     
  12. andviv
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    andviv Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    I found this piece of info in a newsletter, and I remembered this thread. Not too much info, but I think is worth bumpin' this thread.

    Finding a Mentor

    Starting a business is a huge undertaking. Even if you have an MBA and read the right books, there are still many intangibles you need to know to be successful.

    That's why having a mentor is critical. For example, Starbuck's founder Howard Schultz was mentored by the founder of Costco.

    So, where can you find a mentor?

    The good news is that there are a variety of online resources, such as LinkedIn or even Facebook.

    Next, you can go to SCORE, which has thousands of regional offices with retired executives. The service is actually free.

    Finally, you can research top people in your industry and reach out to them. This is what Schultz did - and, no doubt, it worked pretty well.
     
  13. Kung Fu Steve
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    Kung Fu Steve Platinum Contributor Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    I gotta say the SBA is awesome. But don't contact them unless you're serious. Several executives and entrepreneurs would love to give you their time, but they will not let you waste it. Get a basic business plan together -or- let them know where you're at. I have found at least with my branch that they wouldn't hook me up with a mentor until I got my business plan started.
     
  14. PEERless
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    PEERless Bronze Contributor

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    I wrote this for my blog back in April, but you guys might want to see how I find mentors:

    You can't do it alone. Nor would you want to! If you want to really make things happen for yourself, enlist the guidance of someone who has done what you want to do.

    This is easier than some people think, mostly because successful people are more helpful than most imagine. Even the most self-centered person can "help" you without even trying. That's because being asked for help is flattering. It says, "I admire you and want to be like you." Because of this, even the most unlikely person might mentor you. Maybe even inadvertently.

    What kind of mentor should you seek? Where can you find them? As an investor and entrepreneur, I seek the advice and guidance of people with similar interests. I especially value the wisdom of people who have actually made it -- high net-worth people with tried and true maps to success. For instance, some of the people in my mentor Rolodex are:

    • An ex-president of a Fortune 500 company
    • A real estate investor
    • A day trader
    • An ex-CEO of an international bank

    These people all have their own unique insights into how best I can spend my time and money to succeed. For them, it's a chance to reminisce about good choices and help me avoid bad ones.

    And they're not as hard to come across as you might think. Coworkers, neighbors, teachers... any of these people might be a great help to you. All you have to do is ask.

    Here's how I do it. I usually send a small, nondescript greeting card that says something like, "I'm really impressed by what you've done. I'll bet you have some great advice for someone like me who is young and ambitious. If you have the time, I would love to sit down with you and learn how you've become so successful." Tuck a business card in there, and hand-address the envelope.
     
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  15. djs13
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    djs13 Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    Great advice. Rep++

    I guess the dilemma that people my age have is that most of us are only around teens our age, teachers and family members. I guess it depends largely on who your family is, but mine is far from business oriented or financially free. I'm going to keep the paragraph I quoted above for the future, but right now I don't think there's anyone I know that I could drop that business card off to.
     
  16. yveskleinsky
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    yveskleinsky Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

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    You can go to SCORE | Counselors to America's Small Business | SCORE , they mentor for free. You can go to your local REI club. Find someone who is doing what you want to be doing and just ask them if you can take them to lunch or coffee.
     
  17. PEERless
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    PEERless Bronze Contributor

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    You'd be surprised. Even relative strangers will be complimented by your interest. Where can a 17-year-old find good mentors? Owners of your favorite shop? Connections through your guidance counselor? Your boss? They're around. You're already better off than most of your peers by hanging out here with us!
     
  18. Kung Fu Steve
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    Kung Fu Steve Platinum Contributor Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    I think at different levels you can have different mentors. I started out with some very basic mentors to teach me the "Rich Dad" basics. They knew the information but didn't really apply it.

    After that I moved on to some small business owners that taught me a thing or two from experience. Then after that I started to seek out the best mentors and follow them. The best martial arts instructors I could find, the best martial arts school owner I could find, etc. When I was looking at real estate as an investment I actually ended up finding out SteveO and Runum! Now I have some great mentors in my mastermind group!

    Anyways, I think you have to start out with some basic mentors and move your way up.

    I can imagine someone like Yankee who is 17, and already is far far ahead of anyone his age would have a tougher time finding a mentor. (an experience one at least).

    Good thing we have all found the Fastlane!
     
  19. 20art
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    That is very true. I asked my grandpa if anyone has made it big in my family and he said the only one would be my cousin. She is a real estate agent supposably in $million dollar homes, so I would like to meet her.
    I have a bro-n-law who knew some guy that offered him to flip houses with him about 7 yrs ago but he didn't, I guess he lost contact with the guy. It was an oppurtunity that popped up and my bro-n-law didn't even know.

    I will just stay on the look out and see what I can work with.(or who):smug2:
     
  20. Imatk
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    Imatk PARKED

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    I've sort of mentored people before in the visual effects field, but as SteveO said, more often than not those people who were and are successful are people that probably would have made it anyway.

    They had a goal, were driven to the goal, and achieved it. They were always willing to listen and learn and were self-motivated.

    I think mentors are great and, in the case of showbiz especially they are almost a necessity as it's kind of a closed club to outsiders, but in the end it is you who will accomplish with or without a mentor... just might take you a bit longer without ;)
     
  21. 20art
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    Yeah that sounds good
     
  22. TaxGuy
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    TaxGuy Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    This is why they needed a mentor :smxB:

    My view of who a mentor is and what I hope to learn from one is best described in what you just said, that as the person being mentored you have to show that you are driven and goal-oriented, but also need someone to help show you the way. While there are people who have done so without one, it seems that many of the successful types have taken their cues from those who have been there and done that as there are plenty of obstacles that only a seasoned pro knows how to overcome!
     
  23. neverfastenough
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    neverfastenough Contributor

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    The other possibilty is to go on Linkedin. They have a section called "Answers." Could always try posting up a question… from there, based on the answers that you get you could contact one of them through email. By them spending time to answer your questions implies that they're willing to help you in some way or another. Worst case scenario is that they say they're too busy.

    I remember reading a study (which unfortunately I can't find at the moment) which concluded that other people, even strangers, were MUCH more willing to help you than you perceived.
     
  24. mdlevy2004
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    mdlevy2004 PARKED

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    I love this topic because this fits me well. I like coaching others to build a business and mentoring is part of the coaching process. You see, we all need someone that can guide us along each step. For those who have not found a mentor, I am one who can help you build your foundations and help get you off the ground with a business. You can learn more about me and see if I am a fit for you. I have a program I walk folks through to get them the free tools needs to start a business. It is fun for me and like helping people out.
     
  25. Vigilante
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    Vigilante Legendary Contributor Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    Michael. Help me read through the bull shit and gobbley gook on your web site. It looks like you are offering business and/or personal mentoring. How do you have the time to do that while working full time for someone else managing their senior citizen health club? Tell me why anyone should listen to you, when it looks like your W2 income is drawn from managing a municipal senior citizens health facility? What streams of income do you currently have?

    edited to answer my own question. You're into MLM greeting cards. Bye. You're not going to find a single person here interested in joining your down line network.

    You might, though, be interested in breaking free of the bull shit you seem to be pedaling. Pick up a copy of the Millionaire Fastlane.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Millionaire-Fastlane-Wealth-Lifetime/dp/0984358102/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1341451184&sr=8-1&keywords=the+millionaire+fastlane
     

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