Need Help? Get a Mentor

June 24, 2020

Are you raising your hand to get one of the few slots available for a mentor at your company? Well, put that arm down. We suggest an alternative.

Need Help? Get a Mentor

Are you raising your hand to get one of the few slots available for a mentor at your company? Well, put that arm down. Even if you are fortunate enough to get matched up, we suggest an alternative.

Scan the landscape for leaders you admire, people you’d like to be when you grow up. They may have senior roles, or they may not. But they should be someone who is very effective as a leader and who understands how to navigate the system. Get on her/his calendar for an informal chat. Your message is simple: “You don’t know me, but I know you and your work and I’m a fan. It would mean a great deal to me if you would agree to mentor me.”

I need help figuring out what I’m missing and how to achieve more.

You might get some push back about working through the formal program or the person is short on time. Don’t take no for an answer. Prepare a short statement about why you need a mentor and why this person is who you want. “I work hard and get great reviews, but I feel isolated, under-valued and under-developed. I need help figuring out what I’m missing and how to achieve more.” Tell the truth and most good leaders will want to be helpful. If they just don’t have the time, ask them to recommend someone who does who has a similar outlook.

The point is, assert your needs as they arise. Don’t expect company initiatives will do the trick.