If you own or run a business you won’t always have the answers that you need to make a decision, or to push the company forward in the most effective way. Everyone is learning on the job and it doesn’t harm a company to have access to a business mentor to provide a sounding board and guidance based on real life experiences that could stand you in good stead as a business owner.
A business mentor can help you as a company owner to develop the skills you’ll need to survive in the cutthroat world of business, to develop strategies for different environments and scenarios, and to help you make big decisions. A business mentor can offer advice and guidance either in a face-to-face capacity or online and remotely. It is entirely down to each individual agreement, circumstance and level of comfort.
The Structure of a Business Mentor Agreement – Each case is different but generally it works that a business mentor will be in regular contact with you, as a business owner, through a combination of emails, meetings, telephone calls and messages. The structure can be defined by regular meetings with agendas and business objectives discussed, through a more informal ad hoc approach where a mentor is at hand to offer guidance and advice as and when you require it on certain topics.
Finding a Mentor – There are a few ways in which you can find a mentor for your business. This can be achieved through local business networking events or through a variety of nationwide organisations that provide a mentoring network, on both a free and paid for service. By researching mentoring in the UK you’ll come across those specifically catering for start-up businesses, specific business sectors, for young people, single entrepreneurs and a whole host of other sections to choose from.
The Benefits of Business Mentoring – The major benefit to having a business mentor as part of your support network is that they are at hand to fill in any gaps that are missing from your own knowledge and experience. A good business mentor will guide you to develop your business so that it can grow as smoothly as possible, help you weight up different arguments before making a big decision, provide new ideas on products, services and process, as well as providing you with access to a wider network of people that could be potential partners, suppliers, investors or customers. What a business mentor can’t do is run your business for you and give you all the answers. They are there to guide you through their own story and experiences, pointing out the pitfalls and the positives and allowing you to come to your own decisions.