Having a mentor is a great way to ease into a company and learn the ropes from someone that has years of experience and knows the business inside out. Not only that, but by having an accomplished person to shadow, you can also increase your job skills, adapt more easily to your new environment and generally have somebody you can rely on in times of need.
In fact, people who have coaching from experienced members of the team are likely to achieve higher job satisfaction and are more inclined to climb up the career ladder – rather than jump ships further down the line.
So, if you’re still considering whether a mentor will actually be good for you in the workplace, continue reading to find out what positive effects they can have on your career.
1. You’ll Grow and Develop in the Company
Your mentor most likely started off where you are today and, therefore, knows what it takes to progress within the company, so they’re no doubt the best person to guide you through your first few months in your new job.
Workplace mentors are essentially career development gurus who will show you the ropes, teach you the skills you need to develop and generally be someone that you won’t be afraid to approach to ask for advice.
2. You’ll Be More Focused
It’s easy to get distracted in a busy working environment, especially when you have big personalities in the office. Maybe Jim from accounts is shouting about a client, or Beth is uncontrollably laughing with her work BFF. Whatever the commotion is, having a mentor will help you stay on track and keep your attention on professional tasks that will help you get ahead.
Whilst Jane is having a personal breakdown, you’ll be going above and beyond to hit your targets and achieve desired results.
3. You’ll Have a Friend
When employers pair mentors and mentees together, they usually take their interests and personalities into account to ensure they get on. Indeed, after spending so much time with your mentor, you’ll most likely form a special bond with them and discover that you actually have a lot in common.
And more often than not, this person usually becomes a trusted friend by the end of your mentorship programme – meaning, you’ll have a pal to turn to outside of work.
4. You’ll Grow Your Network
Having a mentor that you aspire to be like will turn into a lifelong connection and will help you grow your network. As they have been in the business for a lot longer than you have, they will likely know suitable people they can introduce you to. And, if they don’t know the solution to your problem, they most likely will know someone that will.
An added advantage is also knowing a familiar face at networking events that can show you how to work the room and talk to clients and professionals that are in the same line of work as you.
5. You’ll Get Valid Feedback
If you have an idea that you’re unsure about, you can consult with your mentor and bounce ideas off each other, and they’ll be able to identify potential pitfalls and suggest outcomes that hadn’t even crossed your mind.
They’ll also offer constructive feedback to improve your work before it’s sent to a client or your boss. In turn, they can transform the impression people will have about you by offering valid remarks.
6. You’ll Get Supportive Advice
If you’re experiencing any difficulties at work, a mentor can give you supportive advice to handle the problem in a professional way. Their experience and understanding can keep you from making errors and save you from making the same mistake over and over again.
Meanwhile, it’s easy to talk to your friends and family about workplace issues but, unfortunately, they won’t fully understand the dynamics and, therefore, won’t be able to offer valuable advice. A mentor, on the other hand, has been in your shoes before and as such is better equipped at helping you find a logical solution to your problem.
7. You’ll Have Someone to Your Successes With
A mentor isn’t just there for the bad times; they’re there for the good, as well. They want to see that the time they invested in you has paid off, so don’t be shy to invite them in on the happy times and share your successes with them – big and small. Remember: they don’t ask to be paid – rather, their reward lies in your success.
8. You’ll Improve Your Communication Skills
Your mentor may come from a different background than you, and after spending years in the industry, they’ll have acquired excellent interpersonal and communication skills. As such, they will help you communicate more effectively and will challenge your methods of communication both at work and outside.
They might also aid you in building your confidence by getting you to make a presentation in front of a small audience before you do it in front of the entire company.
9. You’ll Get a Crash Course on Company Culture
Every company’s culture differs slightly, and it’s important to know how the organisation operates and how you can best fit in with the rest of the team. The mentoring scheme will also likely be part of it, so it’s important to put 100% effort into it so you get the best results and become a trusted and valid member of the department.
10. You’ll Feel Happier
Knowing that you’re not just a number in the system will automatically make you feel happier as you know your skills and efforts are truly valued. Having a mentor means that the company is investing time and resources into your development to ensure you excel within the business. After all, if they didn’t care, they wouldn’t have bothered fine-tuning their mentorship programme for you!
11. You’ll Make More Money
When you have more skills, you’ll be more desirable to employers which, in turn, often gives you the opportunity to earn more money than your peers. Also, regardless of whether your mentor is within the same organisation as you or not, they’ll be able to offer you guidance on how to negotiate better pay, get promoted or even consider new career adventures.
12. You’ll Keep Learning
Having a mentor who is able to constantly share their knowledge with you means that you’ll be in a position of continuously learning about anything and everything. They’ll be able to offer you new tips and tricks of the trade, as well as give you great recommendations on which podcasts to listen to and which books to read to enhance your knowledge. And remember: even your most senior colleagues have a mentor, too; they don’t stop developing their skillset just because they’ve got a corner office!
13. You’ll Develop Leadership Skills
By following a supervisor or mentor closely, you’ll monitor how they deliver information and instructions and, in turn, will mimic the leadership skills that they possess. As the saying goes: ‘you’re only as good as your teacher’. So, if your teacher is a great leader, you too will become one someday.
14. You’ll Avoid Office Politics
Every workplace, no matter the size, will always have some kind of office politics – it’s literally unavoidable when you throw a bunch of different characters into a small combined space for hours on end on a daily basis. However, if you have a mentor, they can help you avoid the gossip and teach you how to be impartial when somebody tries to drag you into their problems.
A tailored mentorship programme can transform you from a good employee to an indispensable one. So, what are you waiting for? Even if your company doesn’t offer a good mentorship programme, go out and approach your career idol to see if they have any useful tips for you.
Have you had good experiences with a workplace mentor? We want to hear from you! Join in on the conversation below and let us know…