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Category: Brand · 5 min read

5 Types of Mentors You Need to Help Grow Your Business

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on May 9, 2019

author profile photo

on May 9, 2019

Woman meeting with her mentors

Why do we want mentors in our lives? I think it’s mainly because we want to grow, personally and professionally. We want to improve ourselves and our business. So, we reach out to others to help us get there.  

The truth is, running a business can’t be done alone. You need people around you to help you, support you, and challenge you. That’s where mentors can come in and be the voice of reason and growth in your professional life.  

But not every mentor is the same. In fact, there are different types of mentors to choose from. Here are five different types of mentors you may need to help grow yourself and your business.  

The truth is, running a business can’t be done alone. You need people around you to help you, support you, and challenge you.

1. The One That’s Been There 

This is the mentor that’s done it all and come out on the other side intact and on top. They’re successful, respected, and accomplished. They’re who you want to be and what you want your career to look like in the future. Often, they’re older than you and in the next stage of life. This type of mentor is full of advice, wisdom, and knowledge that they can impart to you as you handle difficult situations, in life and business.  

If you’re lucky, they also have lots of valuable industry connections that they can leverage to help you when you need it, and are a walking resource for you as you navigate through challenges. They don’t have to be in your same industry, but it’s definitely helpful. Ask them about what they would do in a particular situation, how they handled things in the past, and what you need to do to keep growing and bettering yourself.  

 

2. The One That Defends You 

Everyone needs backup at one point or other. You will, too. That’s when the defense mentor comes in handy. This mentor is your sounding board, the one that is there to back up your ideas and offer advice and support. Most importantly, this mentor shows up and is there whenever you need them. Many times, these are close friends, family, or colleagues that support you professionally and personally. They help keep you balanced, and are your first line of defense.  

 

3. The One That Cheers You On 

When life goes right and you have something big to celebrate, who do you call? It could be your cheering mentor. This is the mentor that is there to cheer you on and be excited for you in life’s biggest moments. But it goes beyond milestones and into the regular, day-to-day. They’re constantly encouraging you with texts, emails, and calls. Let them know when you’re having a bad day and are discouraged, and they’re instantly helping lift your mood and speak positive thoughts to you. These people are the real MVPs, and can help you through any bad day.  

 

4. The One That’s Young 

This is also known as “reverse mentoring”. It’s the concept that we can also learn from those younger than us, especially the millennial generation. Let’s face it; millennials know their technology, and are in touch with today’s culture, and you could definitely learn a lot from them about how to harness technology to help grow your business and reach prospects in new ways. Millennials also have fresh perspectives on leadership, and can offer things they’re looking for in leaders and the industry. So, utilize them, and help them, too. Let them teach you something new about technology, and you can offer them advice and help, as well.  

 

5. The One That’s in Your Industry 

For this one, pick someone that knows your exact profession and business, and can offer practical advice and improvements to your practice. Whether they’ve been in the industry longer than you have, or they’re retired and willing to give you their advice and wisdom, these mentors are extremely valuable, and are probably the most important kind of mentor to have. You can talk “shop” with these mentors, and have common ground established already. You can get specific in your questions, and they can be detailed in their answers. It’s a recipe that’s already set up for success, and can be a nice boost to your business goals and vision.  

The bottom line to all this is that mentors can be a key reason behind any business growth you have. They can give you ideas and insights that you wouldn’t have thought of on your own, and can be the support system you need to keep going as you run your business day in and day out.  

Mentors can be a key reason behind any business growth you have.

So, find your mentors. Identify the types of mentors you need in your life, and then think about your existing relationships or acquaintances. Would any of them be a good fit for mentorship?  

 

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Written By

Mark Williams

President and CEO

Mark Williams is the President/CEO of Brokers International. Over his more than 25 years of financial services experience, Mark has been both a producing independent agent in the field and a home office leader consulting to agencies and field marketing organizations. Currently, Mark is focused on the future of the insurance industry, from the disruptions of InsurTech and robo-advisors to the changing demographics and needs of customers. He also is an avid mentor, helping financial professionals navigate the industry.

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