Rising Professional Challenge Series #8
Obtain and continually maintain one or more mentors that help guide your personal and professional.
WHY THIS CHALLENGE IS IMPORTANT
Learning from successful professionals is a much faster and more efficient than trying to learn everything yourself.
HOW DO WE GET THERE
Before seeking mentorship, ensure that you are prepared to listen to and act upon constructive criticism from others. Individuals often become defensive when hearing criticism from others which tends to interfere with learning and productive progress. Opening yourself up to listening to constructive criticism from others is hard and takes practice. The fact that other people are willing to provide you feedback means they care about you; it is not easy nor fun for others to provide constructive criticism so be grateful and patient. First, identify an individual that you would like to obtain mentorship from. Typically you do not ask them directly to be your mentor; rather you volunteer to help them and show a genuine interest in their activities by asking questions and seeking to understand their objectives. Next, take it one step further by adding value by helping them with their objectives. In addition to helping them, you will be amazed how much you learn by helping and being directly involved. People are more willing to help you, once you show an interest and start adding value. This process naturally establishes the mentorship relationship, make sure you are listening and following through on the advice and activities your mentor is providing you. In some instances, the advice may not make sense to you but you must trust your mentor or find a new mentor. If you do not follow their advice, your mentor is going to quickly get frustrated and stop really trying to help you.
Our challenge for you is to ask three people close to you how you can improve professionally. Listen to their feedback and thank them. Yes, this is practice hearing constructive criticism. Second, follow through and make some changes they suggest. Now you are read to find a mentor. Finding a mentor his not always an easy process, so it can take some time to find the right successful professional.
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Exerceo's goal is to provide guidelines to rising professionals; however, everyone's situation can vary greatly so please apply your own judgement and best practices.
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