It is very rare for anyone to achieve great results in anything without the support of other people. Of course it is possible, someone had the be the first person to do something.
During my life I have had many people mentor me on many aspects of my life, sometimes unsolicited. One thing I have noticed is people love giving you their opinions. Furthermore there are some peoples opinions I take on board and some peoples I don’t.
When I started out in business some people encouraged me to go for it and some people didn’t. It was a very confusing time for me, because some of the people discouraging me were close to me.
So with all of these opinions and advices going round, how do you identify what is the right and wrong thing to do. Here’s what’s helped me!
- Decide what you want
We are going to focus on your career for this article. You need to be clear in which direction you want to take your career. The reason being is otherwise you are going to be pulled in many directions. Because you are not SOLD on what you are doing, everyone’s opinion is going to be right. One day you will do one thing and the next day something totally different.
When I started out in my career, I had made the decision that I wanted to learn sales and business, so who to listen to became easy to decide.
- Find Someone That Has The Results You Desire
This is a pretty obvious one. This has been crucial to my development in my career. I became pretty obsessed with only listening to people that were getting the results I desired. I honestly believe success is a language that just like any other you can learn. But just like any other subject, you need to learn from people that know what they’re talking about.
- What does the person gain from helping me
I strongly believe someone has to gain something from helping you. This could be financial, work, exposure etc. The reason I believe this is important is it means you will get their full attention and best information. If the person mentoring you doesn’t gain anything from helping you then it’s guaranteed, even if they are a good person that you won’t get the best from them.
- Are they producing results NOW!
To really find the best mentors, look at the results they’re getting now. There’s plenty of examples of mentors that give out information that ‘used to work’. Times change and business evolves and its crucial that you know the information you are getting is relevant to now.
Don’t let previous successes make you think that mentor is doing the right thing now. Peoples goals change, peoples intensity changes and so do their perspectives. Make sure the person mentoring still has the same goals as you!
- Ignore anyone else
This sounds pretty harsh, but it is important. I don’t mean cut people out of your life, but you need to have filtered listening when it comes to taking advice. If someone doesn’t match the previous points then hear what they have to say but take the advice with a pinch of salt. The goal isn’t to destroy relationships so you don’t have to be rude. Chances are not everyone in your life will add value to your career, but they can be a valuable friend, partner, sibling, mum and dad.
I can’t stress how important having the right mentors in my life has been in my career. The best thing about the right mentor is they can pave the way to your goals, as long as you choose the mentors carefully. The people you listen to can either send you directly to your goal, or painfully off track!