Finding a Mentor

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Once you narrow down what you need from a mentor, searching for one becomes a bit easier. Here are a few places to look:

 

  • Within your network: Former managers, professors, or contacts you know through your friends and family are great places to start.
  • Strangers: Perhaps no one in your immediate network quite fits what you’re looking for. There is no harm in considering a stranger to be your mentor and there are a few places to look:
  • Search for potential mentors online using LinkedIn.
  • Look through the members of associations related to your field or the field you’re interested.
  • Check the alumni directory of your university for potential connections.

Also, it may seem intuitive that you’ll want a mentor from your professional field, but don’t discount the value of a mentor from a very different profession or background. Mentoring relationships can span many years, so your mentor might follow you through several job changes.

 

How to Manage a Mentoring Relationship

 

Below are some guidelines for setting up and running a successful mentoring arrangement:

 

  • Set regular mentoring meetings
  • Be honest and open
  • Build sustainable improvements, not quick fixes
  • Play by the rules