My life and business are about to go through a transition, with my youngest child starting school in a couple of weeks.
The opportunities are so immense that I'm afraid of missing out on something due to a lack of focus and lack of planning.
So lately, I've been looking for a business mentor to help me through this transition. I've got big goals now that I can work on my home business full time. I feel that I need expert guidance to bring them to fruition.
My biggest problem now is, whom will I choose to guide me? Which expert do I want as a mentor?
In case you're going through something like this yourself, let me share some of the considerations I have for choosing my mentor:
My mentor should be several steps AHEAD of me, such that she has already achieved what I'd like to accomplish.
By this I mean income, for sure. However, I'm also looking for someone who's already living my ideal lifestyle. I don't want to learn from somebody who's earning millions… but working 16 hours a day.
Also, because of this, I believe that my mentor should be a woman and, more specifically, a Mom. Males–even Dads–just don't have the same child care responsibilities that Moms have, and my mentor needs to understand what limitations and challenges motherhood places on me.
I'm looking for a combination of integrity, genuine concern for others, and plain ol' business sense.
Having worked in the non-profit area for most of my adult life, entrepreneurship doesn't come easily to me. I need somebody to coach me on practical business matters.
On the other hand, I don't want to learn business from someone who would cheat, lie, deceive or use less than virtuous business methods–no matter how good an entrepreneur she is!
I may be strange, but I do believe that business and the struggle for holiness can go hand in hand (FYI: Did you know that St. Nicholas is the patron saint of merchants and businessmen?)
Finally, my mentor should have an open heart for helping others. She should have products or coaching programs I can access–at a reasonable rate.
And she should be AVAILABLE for support. Just a few days ago, I was considering signing up for a business coach's program. However, when I learned that he wouldn't be accepting follow-up questions even through email, I changed my mind.
He told me, in effect, that he was too busy to see me through to success. Unless I paid for his higher-priced coaching program, that is. No, thank you!
I've worked with other coaches who allow at least one follow-up email a month. Another gives unlimited email coaching… as long as they're not so complicated as to warrant a 30-minute call.
Those are signs of a generous heart that I want in a mentor.
When I started writing this post, I wasn't sure which mentor I would choose. But in the process of writing it, my choice became clear. I'm going with Kelly McCausey's Faith Based Coaching Group.
Kelly is one smart cookie. She recently doubled her income (after going through her own life transition when her son left for college). She's a faithful Christian who allows her spirituality to infuse her whole life, including her business. She's one generous lady.
Have I missed anything you feel is essential? What qualities do YOU look for in a mentor? Please share in the comments below.
Lexi Rodrigo is a communication and marketing professional for multimillion-dollar businesses, co-author of Blog Post Ideas: 21 Proven Ways to Create Compelling Content and Kiss Writer's Block Goodbye, and host of "Marketing Insights LIVE!." Connect with Lexi on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.
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