Having a mentor may be the single most important investment you can make in your business.
Whether you’re a rookie salesperson or a seasoned professional, you have so much to gain from the guidance of someone who’s been successful in your field. And yet, there are still so many people who are hesitant to ask for mentorship.
There are a few reasons for this.
- Asking for help requires you to be vulnerable.
- A real commitment to self-improvement takes time and energy.
- In many cases, the best option is to hire a professional coach.
The emotional and financial costs of mentorship are enough to scare some people away. But, as Warren Buffet says, the greatest investment you can make is in yourself. Ultimately, you need to ask: How much am I worth? What is my future worth?
When you feel ready to make this fundamental investment in yourself, here are the three most important traits to look for in a mentor.
The first thing to look for in a mentor is the quality of their resume. Unfortunately, while there are many coaches out there who have a great sales pitch, there are also many who lack the real-world results to back up what they say. Has this person actually walked the walk, or are they just making empty promises?
Find a mentor who has already achieved the goals you’re looking to achieve—someone who has the authority to say what works and what doesn’t. While there’s no guarantee their methods will also work for you, you’re far more likely to thrive on the wisdom of someone who has actually been successful.
Of course, there’s much more to being a great mentor than simply being knowledgeable. One of the most valuable traits of the world’s top real estate coaches—like Tom Ferry and Brian Buffini—is their ability to hold clients accountable. That, ultimately, is why they get results.
Think of your mentor in the same way you’d think of your trainer at the gym. Your mentor is not your best friend; they’re someone whose job is to make sure you achieve your goals. They will call you out when you don’t deliver on your promises, every bit as much as they will applaud your successes.
Find yourself a true partner in accountability, and you’ll begin to push yourself harder than you ever thought possible.
More than anything else, a mentor is someone who keeps you true to your vision. They will remind you of your goals, as well as what it takes to achieve them. This person will keep you motivated and inspired, and be there to pick you up when you’re down. But they also shouldn’t let you stray from your values.
That’s why it’s important to find someone whose beliefs align with your own. If your passion is helping others, you won’t want to work with a coach whose primary focus is making money. Ultimately, your mentor needs to inspire you to be the best version of yourself, which means staying true to your morals and ethics.
The pastor at my church is a businessman, who owns a successful architectural engineering firm with four offices. He could’ve grown his business even more if he’d chosen to cut corners, but, instead, he’s always treated people with respect. He’s set a great example for me. Knowing his story has proven to me, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you can succeed in business while staying true to yourself.
So, whether you end up seeking the services of a professional coach or connecting with someone you already know, you’ll want to find a mentor who will help you grow not only in business, but as a person. By doing this, you’ll be sure to get back any investment you make, tenfold.