How to Get Your Own Mentor
“I lucked out; I had a good mentor when I was 19. Otherwise, I’d probably be working for somebody.”
Matt Kubancik – Street Moda ($6.8 million dollars in revenue at the age of 25)
Finding a real mentor can be a turning point in your business. So how do you find an amazing mentor that you don’t have to pay anything and who is dedicated to your success because they believe in you?
When I first started out in business almost 10 years ago, I remembered thinking, “I just want someone to know me and my situation and just tell me what to do!”
Now, a mentor is someone you don’t necessarily seek to be your best friend. Mentors are someone you can ask for advice occasionally, and they will respond. You want someone that’s very high level because that is where you want to be in a few years’ time. They’ll give you insider knowledge for strategy and planning.
There is a distinction between a mentor and a coach. A coach is someone who is there with you every day or every week and can really give you the fine tweaks, taking a look at your business, what you are doing, help you review stuff and is right there with you. A mentor, is usually where you want to be, and isn’t someone that specifically coaches others in the week to week tasks. They will guide you strategically on where they think you should go based on your expertise.
Finding My Mentor
Getting a mentor is partly on you to take the initiative to ask for advice. The other part is an organic relationship that can grow from a chance encounter. Here is how I got my first amazing mentor:
Before I had any real experience in my business coaching, I decided I wanted to talk to the competition. The competition was a sixty-year-old man, and I was a twenty-seven-year-old gal (who looked about eighteen). Asking for his advice put me on the fast track to where I am now.
I don’t know where I would have been if I wasn’t willing to send the email to him.
One day while I was looking up potential competitors that were local, I found Kurk Lalemand. He spoke at all of the local events, and was well known in the community. I was a bit intimidated reading about him. He had sold a million dollar business, and had a great network already.
I decided to send him an email on a whim. I mentioned that I had recently moved to the area and was getting into coaching and found him. I laid out a few questions for him in the email. Shortly after I received an email back from him asking to set up a time to chat. Our meeting that was supposed to be an hour lasted over 2 hours.
He ended up giving me a ton of advice on who to target in the area and where I should be connected. I thought it was amazing that he was so willing to give advice. I left his office thinking how great our meeting went, so I decided to send him a thank you note. I just wanted to thank him for all of the time he gave me.
I was surprised when a few days later I received an email from him, asking about a possible mentor/apprentice role. When we met about it, he said the thank you card I sent really sealed the deal about asking. Even though he was looking to mentor someone who was much older than I was, he was really impressed.
I ended up working for free for him for a few hours a week for six months; in exchange he taught me everything he knew. Because he was a coach and a mentor he was able to push me and help me grow personally. The growth I experienced in those months were exponential. He had me cold calling, doing cold walk ins, public speaking and really stepping out of my comfort zone.
Fast forward to today- I’ve had so many mentors I had to organize a board of them so they all decided on ONE path for me. It was getting confusing having separate pieces of advice. So don’t worry – it’s easier than you think to get one!
The first step I want you to start is to make a list of people that you think would be amazing mentors for you. Write down at least 10 people. You have to think practically though. Although Tony Robbins or Oprah might be your ideal mentor, you have to first go after people that are four to five levels above you, not 120 levels above you. You can always upgrade your mentor as you move up in your business. Try to go after people that are not in the public eye as much, they may have more time to devote to being your mentor.
The second step is to actually email them. Yes, you actually have to make contact!
Download the template below of the email. Your goal is initial contact, and to build a relationship with them. After that initial contact you’ll want to keep the relationship alive by giving and being extremely attentive.
For example – if you ask for advice in the first email, the next point of contact can be a huge thank you and the results from the actions that you took from his advice. Every mentor wants to make sure their time is used wisely. If you show that you use the advice and get results they will be more willing to continue giving you results because it feels good to help someone make progress!
You don’t even have to formally ask them to be your mentor. You are getting advice from a wiser person. But if you want to take it to the next level, I highly recommend giving to them even more. Offer your own expertise or time to help them. Ask them what they need help with and help save them time. You will start to become a welcomed email in their inbox.
After that do your best to try and meet in person or hop on the phone. While it’s not required – you have to deepen the relationship in order to have them invested enough to want to help.
Once you have given enough, asking someone out to coffee or meeting them at an event they are already going to is a good choice!
If you do formally want to ask, once you’ve created a more solid relationship, you can say something like.. “I would love to have you, or someone like you as a mentor, do you have any recommendations for me on how to do that?” It’s a super soft way to ask, so if they don’t feel like they have the time, they might be able to introduce you to someone else.
Then bam! A mentor 🙂 It’s not necessarily a FAST process but moving forward on it is definitely worthwhile as it can catapult your business to success faster than almost anything else I know!
Good luck and let me know if you have questions!
- Create a list of 10 potential mentors
- Email them using the email template here
Thanks for listening!
Hi I’m Jaime. Each and every week I bring you the top business advice from the people who know best.Learn More