First, mentors have 24 hours just like any human being in the whole world.
Again, mentors too have their personal dreams and goals to achieve. That said, they don’t want time wasters mentees. They don’t want lazy mentees. They don’t want ‘push buttons’
So, for them to mentor others, they watch out for certain characteristics in the would be mentees or proteges.
Here are some of them:
- They watch out for humility
An arrogant mentee cannot be successful mentored. Hardly would any mentor be excited to take on an arrogant mentee-to-be; all mentors want a teachable mentees.
Arrogance is like a raised barrier to stem or stop the flow of knowledge and know-how.
As a mentee-to-be, check your arrogance level, if it is high up there, it would be hard for any mentor to take you on.
2. They watch out for learner’s attitude.
Yes, there is something called LEARNER’S ATTITUDE.
Learner’s attitude is your perspective to learning: willing to learn, absorbing knowledge shared like a sponge absorbs water.
Learner’s attitude also tells about how much of a researcher you are.
That also talks about how much question you ask people and how curious you are.
Basically, how hungry are you when it comes to knowledge?
All mentors want, hungry-for-knowledge mentees-to-be. They want curious mentees.
Would you follow up and research what your mentor teaches you or shares with you?
Would you be ready with questions for your mentors every time you have a meeting with him?
Would you bring things you don’t understand in question format when you meet with your mentor?
If you can answer those questions in the affirmative, you are close to being mentored.
3. They watch out for doer’s attitude.
All mentors watch out for this. A mentor wouldn’t be happy giving you tasks to do or share vital tips with you hoping that you would implement them or act on them seeing you do nothing with such information.
Which mentor would be happy with that? None.
They all want mentees-to-be to be DOERS.
The question is, as a mentee-to-be, are you action proned?
Do you delay to take action or not take action at all? This would determine how far your mentoring will go.
4. They watch out for positive mental attitude.
What has positive mental attitude got to do with mentoring?
A lot, Dear!
I tell you this, very few people can work with a consistently negative person. Negativity poisons! Wherever it is coming from, whether from vertical relationships (friends, colleagues, peers, coursemates, etc) or horizon relationships (like your boss, father, or anybody higher than you either biologically, or designation wise).
So, mentors don’t want negative people around them. Life is energy: positive and negative. They always want positive energy around them.
The question is, are you carrying negative vibes around or your aura is positivity?
5. They watch out for creator’s attitude.
Creativity resides in every man. However, growing up has robs many people of their creative instincts. Few go around thinking to themselves that they are creative.
The society too hasn’t helped much. The society we live in has created HALOS on few people in our society as the creatives. People like music stars, artists, writers and authors, etc. are portrayed as the creatives. That is far from the truth.
You are creative. If you’re hearing (reading) this for the first time, I say it again, you’re are creative.
Back to where we were, your would be mentor would be glad to know that you are creative.
By showing your creative instinct. It shows in what you do. How you do what you do.
In the process of mentoring, there would be occasions where you might be required to carry some tasks (projects) or assignments for your mentor, how you do that will surely show your creative instinct.
Always let your creative instinct show in whatever you do.
6. They watch out for giver’s attitude.
Let me ask you, are you a giver?
You ask again, “What has giving got to do with mentoring?”
I reply again, “A lot!”
Know this, a mentor is a giver. A giver of knowledge. A giver of know-hows. A giver of trade secrets. A giver through and through.
Many mentees always miss this point. Most times, there mentors are people who are accomplished in their fields and often are materially rich. So, the mentees often feel they have all they need and they don’t have to give their mentors anything.
I often tell them, “Give to your mentors.” They would ask, “What do I give when they have all they need?”
There are many things you can give your mentor. This require putting thoughts into it.
Here are few things you can give:
• give your time to help him out in carrying out some of his projects.
• give him books you have observed he talked about but hasn’t bought yet or doesn’t have.
• give him gift items for his children (if he has some).
• give him fruits he likes.
• give him links of articles that can help him in his business or career (or print out of such articles or photocopy of article in a published magazine or journal).
• give him encouragement when he needs it most.
• give him words of appreciation.
• give him congratulatory words when he win awards, etc.
7. They watch out for innovative attitude.
Mentors like mentees that are innovative with ideas they share with their mentees.
There are so many things youvare likely to learn from your mentor which you might likely replicate. That’s fine. But if you can innovate that same idea. That’s excellent.
Your mentor might not be able to spot this attitude at the before the start of the mentoring relationship or at the beginning but as the mentoring progresses in due time, he would be able to know this.
Don’t just be “As they say, I do” person. Think of, how can this idea shared with me be made better? They watch out for gold digger’s attitude.
8. They watch put for problems solver’s attitude.
There many mentees who carry their problems and dump them on their mentors’ laps to be solved.
Fine, your mentor will help you by suggesting things you can do, people you can meet, places you can go to, books to read, perspectives to learn from, ideas to dump, moves not to make and so on.
They can do all these for you, but they won’t solve your problems or most of your problems.
What they can do for you is to guide you, advice you, points you to solutions, etc. Your responsibility is to act on these things.
If you are the type of person that sits on others to practically solve your problem for you, you might wait for so long. Mentors too have their issues to battle with.
Grab those counsels and tips from your mentor and go run to solve yourur problems and come back and give feedback. Yes, mentors love feedback. They love results. They want to see you give positive results on instructions they passed on to you.
9. They watch out for implementor’s attitude
From some of the points above, they have emphasised this last point.
Mentors love people who can implement what they have been taught.
Your mentor becomes your coach and teacher. He would teach you things, principles, he had practiced and gotten result from.
He would share with you deep insights that can turn your life, career or business around.
But what use is that if you don’t make use of them? The essence of sharing them with you in the first place is for you to use them to get result for yourself.
Are you ready to implement what you would be taught? Don’t be quick to answer, “Yes!”
Check your life, what have you done with the teaching, learnings, instructions, tips you have read from books and heard from people around you?
That would tell you whether you are an implementor or not.
On this note, I wish you a blissful mentoring relationship, if you find one.