Business mentors can be a valuable source of information, insight, and assistance, giving your new business that extra leg up it needs to stay competitive and on track.
What can a business mentor do for me?
Here are three reasons you should consider a business mentor to help you grow your business.
1. A business mentor is a neutral third party—unlike your friends and family.
While it’s wonderful to be able to bounce your business ideas off of trusted loved ones, be wary of basing all of your decisions by sampling only the people who know you well.
Even if your family is trying to be objective, their sphere of experience with you is in the personal realm, not necessarily in business. In addition to your support network, it can be extremely valuable to consult someone a little more familiar with your field who can look at the business without any personal feelings toward you biasing the critiques.
2. A business mentor will help your business find focus.
It’s easy for a fresh entrepreneur to get so wrapped up in the idea of the business that he or she tends to forget what the business really does in concrete terms. And the ability to operate as a self-sustaining business within a reasonable amount of time of startup depends on monetizing those actions.
A business mentor will help you organize your ideas into an actual business framework so that you and anyone else involved with your business have a clear idea of where you’re trying to go and how you’re planning to get there.
3. A business mentor has the experience you lack.
Not sure how the market might respond to a certain direction? Ask your mentor. This is a person who has been through the market analysis and the strategies and can be a source of valuable insights about your field.
Where can I find a great business mentor?
It sounds incredible, but it’s true—for no charge, SCORE provides qualified mentoring services to aspiring businesses, explaining the processes and keeping a lookout for any roadblocks along the way. (My fiance has used these services for a few different business ventures, just to double-check himself, and he learned valuable lessons in being prepared through writing a business plan.)
Wherever you find your mentor, make sure that your mentor is experienced in your field and dedicated to seeing you succeed.
Have you used a business mentor—or have you been a mentor to someone else? Tell us about it in the comments section below!