Tuesday, June 19, 2012
How to Find a Mentor and Why You Need One
By Lindsay Olson
One of the best ways to reinvigorate your work life, boost your job search, or help guide your career path is to work with a mentor. A mentor can help guide you through common problems and make recommendations on how to improve your job performance.
Talking to a mentor about your career can help you make better decisions about moving to a new job, taking a promotion or asking for a raise. Typically, you would work with someone with experience in your industry, as she would be best equipped to understand what it takes to succeed in your field. If you're starting out in the accounting field, you might find a mentor who runs an accounting practice. Finding someone who has had a career path similar to yours can help give you the direction and advice on how you can succeed.
Mentoring programs differ one to the next. Some are very formal and meet every week or so. Others are more organic. Maybe you exchange emails and have lunch once every few months. You get out of a mentoring program what you put in. Make it worth both your time and that of your mentor's.
How to Find a Mentor
Some companies have formal mentor programs, designed to help you achieve specific goals. If your company doesn't have such a program, create your own. At networking events, look for seasoned professionals who take an interest in you. Search LinkedIn for qualified professionals with similar interests, group affiliations, and career paths.
More info on finding a mentor and complete US News article