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How to choose a mentor

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How to choose a mentor

A good number of entrepreneurs along the way have discovered why they need a mentor as an entrepreneur and things mentors can do for them but their difficulty has always been how to choose a mentor. One business we consulted for honestly admitted to having experienced some difficulties in choosing a mentor prior to opting in for business yield mentorship and coaching program. The same is for many businesses out there and this has really prompted this article. Mentorship and coaching for businesses can never be overemphasized. The following are steps to help you on how to choose a mentor.

1. Discover yourself First. Who are you? What nature of business inspires you the most? What strengths do you have and what loopholes do you see in your business. You have to know where you’re heading to before calling on someone to help you in the journey. Defining what you and your business stand for is the first thing that determines the rest. Jim Collins in his book built to last clearly stated that one of the qualities discovered inbuilt to last business was having a clear purpose, vision, and mission they are committed to.

You have to state clearly what you and your business stand for. If you fail on this, every successful person will look like a mentor to you just like the adage that says, if you don’t know where you’re heading to, every way looks like the way.

Not every successful person should mentor you there are qualities to look out for in a mentor (internal link here). But before that get clear on what exactly you business should be doing and never should do.

2. Be clear on what you want. Why exactly do you need a mentor? If you don’t figure this out, you likely won’t make the right choice let alone getting the benefits of the mentorship exercise (internal link here) Make your expectation clear and pen them down. Once you figure out what you want, it’s time to begin your chance.

3. Values. What are you values? You wouldn’t want to have someone who doesn’t live by the same value to mentor you. While people have different values and principles that govern their lives, it easier to tell yourself to learn the lesson and discard the contradicting values. It doesn’t work that way. No one wants to see another ride on his value or neglect his basic principles. You can’t cope for long and can’t fake it for long. If it doesn’t align, let ago. Some people break some right and moral business values and get away with it. You might not succeed in borrowing the same.

5. Start your selection. Now your know what you and your business stand for. You are clear on what your expectations are, it time to start looking out for successful people who have walked the journey you want to get started on not minding their location or age. Which successful people have shown a successful track record in your proposed field of business? If you don’t know, you can search them out on google. How do you get them to mentor you? I have written on How to get any desired successful business person to mentor you. check out the strategies and follow-through.

5. Consider their strengths and weaknesses. Everyone has a weakness and you’re not exempted. A mentor should sharpen your skill and complement your weaknesses. The mentor has weaknesses too and expects to see them. His weaknesses shouldn’t blind your eyes on his strength. However, he should have more strength to complement your weaknesses than his part of weaknesses that matches your weaknesses.

Read Also: 500+ Business Plans

6. Communication. Someone can be too good and so successful but lack the ability to effectively communicate the same strategies, principles, and practices that made them successful. How strong is his communication skills? How much time does he have to communicate with you? Some people can be too busy that they have no time to coach others. This kind of people can be a good catch if you are willing to get into their lives and take off some tasks of them, as you do this task, you are practically learning what they do. However, if they believe, their activities must revolve around them, then they are bad leaders, avoid such. This is because they will never trust and anyone enough to handle the task better than they’ll do so never will delegate the task to you. Proving otherwise to them by exceeding their expectations and doing better with a touch of excellence will make them feel insecure and you’ll become a threat. Such people are not ready to pass on their knowledge.

7. Can you afford to return the favour? Mentorship should be a win-win. No one wants to harbor a parasite. knowing this would help you benefit more from the mentor. If they put a price tag, then you should be able to pay. However, the pay isn’t always about money. What can you give in exchange? If you don’t, you can ask the mentor about what expectations he has. It pays to give back to your mentors, as they will be inclined to stay engaged in the relationship for longer. Successful mentorships are two-way streets in which the mentor learns new things as well – not by calling on the same experience that a mentor brings, but by bringing insights about new developments not present when the mentor was younger.

Favour Emeli is passionate to see businesses grow and yield increasing profit. He consults for business and has helped some secure grants and funding. He is the Author of 365days Business Devotional For Entrepreneurs

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Mistakes you Should Avoid as a Start-up Entrepreneur.

Building a successful business─ whether it be online business or an offline investment─ demands so much discipline, extreme caution and proper risk management analysis.

You must have this at the back of your mind: every business is a risky venture, and to maximize profit, you must control your risk probabilities and minimize every possible cost.

In this article, I will be sharing what I may tag my life experience in business and how you can leverage on them when building your own business, and mistakes you should avoid as a start-up entrepreneur.

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entrepreneur-start-up-mistake

Building a successful business whether online business or offline demands discipline, caution and risk management analysis.

You must have this at the back of your mind: every business is a risky venture, and to maximize profit, you must control your risk probabilities and minimize every possible cost.

In this article, I will be sharing what I may tag my life experience in business and how you can leverage on them when building your own business, and mistakes you should avoid as a start-up entrepreneur.

Being new to the business, you may be tempted to believe everything: from what you heard from your supplier to what your friends/families must have assured you about the business.

But in the business world, there is nothing like promise or trust, instead what you have is terms and conditions, and profit and loss.

When you carry out your business on trust, you stand a higher risk of losing both your money and whatever relationship you share with your client.

For every Cheque, transaction, and monetary expenses, please have a written agreement of your terms, conditions, and legal implications of such transactions. It is always safer to protect and preserve your business with a written agreement than to exchange words and curse your client for a trust-based business gone wrong.

This is the first entrepreneur start-up mistake to avoid.

  • 2. Never Run your Business without Proper Documentation.

This is the second entrepreneur start-up mistake on our list.

You will always have brilliant business ideas, and wonderful business inspiration, but the very moment you want to turn such ideas into a business where people can patronize your services or products, please, by all means, have a well-documented business portfolio for your business.

This document shall contain every legal validation that makes your business legitimate in your region; the services that you provide; and the privacy policy of your business.

If you do not want the government to pull down your sweat or for you to lose your millions in a legal lawsuit with your client, then you must by all means have all the necessary documents and approval before starting your business.

  • 3. Never Run your Business on Credit.

Every start-up business will always face the challenge of trying to win customers and make a profit. Sometimes some business owners will sell their products to friends, relatives, and families hoping that they will pay later or that they will win their patronage.

The reality is that it takes more to recover money than it will take you to put the right policy in your business. We all need customers/clients but nobody needs debtors in their business, so if any of your clients can’t pay for your product or service, then do not sell to the individual.

Tons of businesses have shut down as a result of debtors who never paid for the service or product they got or used. You may wish to take this point seriously.

This is another entrepreneur start-up mistake to avoid.

  • 4. Never pump-in all your capital at the start of your business.

Apparently you heard that business A is profitable and boom you invested everything in the business so that you can make maximum profit. Well, I have some bad news for you; this is exactly how many investors became bankrupt for life. Don’t become a victim of this entrepreneur’s start-up mistake.

Every business has stages─ spudding phase, consolidation phase, and the expansion phase ─ and you must monitor your growth indices and take adequate risk measures before determining whether to invest more or to maintain what is currently in existence.

Why do I suggest that you do not invest all your funds in a particular business? The answer is simple, every business is dynamic, and your predictions today may be right for one month but may fail after two months of operation.

The best alternative would be to invest 25% of your capital, then increase the capital only when you have strong and positive profit indicators.

  • 5. Never run your business with incompetent hands.

Business is a fierce battle, battle against loss, failure, competitors, government policies, and forces of demand and supply. And no matter how wonderful your business ideas might be, there is someone somewhere plotting something better to take your clients or improve on your services at a reduced rate.

Anyone who entrusts their business to someone who is not competent; someone who is not committed to the business; or someone who has a poor customer relationship, is most definitely joking with his or her business.

Business doesn’t respect any degree or faith but principles of wealth creation. If you joke with your business, you will lose your clients, funds, and your integrity as an individual.

Read Also: 500+ Business Plans

Conclusion

This topic entrepreneur start-up mistake is vast, but I shall continue to share tips that I believe will guide you as you navigate through the rough path of setting up your own business.

I must congratulate you for your bravery and courage to tow through this path, and I can guarantee to you that you will smile someday in the future.

Always remember, the economy belongs to entrepreneurs; and the world awaits your business ideas.

Till I write to you again, keep checking this space for business tips.

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Qualities to consider before choosing a good mentor

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Qualities to consider before choosing a good mentor.

Not every successful person should be your mentor, there are qualities to consider before choosing a good mentor. People differ and so are there strengths and weaknesses. You cannot make a successful swimmer your business mentor except your business is about training swimmers. Even if that’s the case, a rich successful track record isn’t enough. So what other qualities should you look out for?

1. Availability.

Some successful people are so busy that they have no time to train others. A mentor should be willing to avail of time for you.

Read also: How to get your desired mentor

2. Communication.

Is one thing to know something, is another thing to effectively communicate it. A mentor should have a successful track record but must as well know how to pass down the principles, strategies, and secrets that made him successful. If he can’t teach or mirror it, then you may want to consider more options.

3. Caring but stern.

A mentor should be able to care, understand your effort, and pat you at the back when you actualize some goals but that’s not the norm. He’s to stretch you into doing more and look you in the eye to tell you the truth others can’t tell you. He sieves out the sentiment from the real thing. A mentor is to bring out the best in you and that’s only done by pushing you out of a comfort zone. More than care expect the push.

Read also: How to benefit from business mentorship.

4. Patience.

A mentor should be patient. He understands it’s a growth process that never happens overnight but over time. He understands you have a weakness and is patient enough to see you grow despite that. Patience is one of the qualities of a good mentor.

5. Deep interest.

He should have a genuine interest in your business and most especially in you. The deep interest could be revealed by the kind of question he asks. The time he gives to your business, however, you too must understand he has tasks before him and personal issues to resolve, you can choose to offer help to him. Deep interest in him will reciprocate the same.

6. Right values.

Check out your values and how it matches or contradicts with his. What are your values? You wouldn’t want to have someone who doesn’t live by the same value to mentor you. While people have different values and principles that govern their lives, it easier to tell yourself to learn the lesson and discard the contradicting values. It doesn’t work that way. No one wants to see another ride on his values or neglect his basic principles. You can’t cope for long and can’t fake it for long. If it doesn’t align, let go. Some people break some right and moral business values and get away with it. You might not succeed borrowing the same, even if you do, for how long will you without repercussions.

A quality of a good mentor is someone that has the right values.

Read also: The mind of a succeeding entrepreneur

7. Trustworthy.

Is trust important to him? How well do his words align with his actions? Do you think of him as someone who can be trusted and does he see you as one who can be trusted? Business is only as fast as the speed of trust as stated by Stephen Covey Jnr in his book The speed of trust.

Read also: 4 Essential pillars to gaining trust in business.

8. Willingness to share knowledge.

Some people can be insecure in giving out their business secrets. How willing is your mentor to expose you to the same secrets that built him? These secrets might not come if you don’t know how to benefit from mentorship. It might not be that he’s reserved about some things, it might be you who doesn’t know how to spark up conversations to your favour.

9. Approach-ability.

You should have easy access to your mentor when you really need him. This is one of the reasons why he’s your mentor. Anyone can choose to get mentored through books, but there’s more to mentorship than books.

Read Also: 500+ Business Plans

10. Good listener.

Is one thing to listen in order to understand and is another to wait patiently to talk when it is your turn to or when the other person is done. Most people don’t listen, they’re the only patient to allow you to talk. A mentor should be a good listener, who deeply wants to understand instead of assuming he understands and wants to quickly provide solutions.

This is a quality to consider before choosing a mentor.

Read also: How to choose a good mentor

A person might not have all these but is best to choose what matters most to you and go by it. You can feel free to contact us for a great mentorship or coaching experience.

These are the 10 Qualities to consider before choosing a good mentor.

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THE MIND OF A SUCCEEDING ENTREPRENEUR

“The mind is a very powerful tool that has the potential of producing extra ordinary results if used aright. Any entrepreneur or employee that wants to succeed needs to learn the skill of rightfully engaging the mind because that is what it takes to build a true and successful business leader within a company.”

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All businesses are products of ideas; either novel or rebranded. Whether you are launching your own personal venture or expanding on an already existing business, one of the most pressing priorities you will need to do as a business leader is to develop and strengthen your entrepreneurial mindset. As an entrepreneur, building a business takes a large amount of time, work, energy, and sacrifice. As draining and demanding as it can be, the end result is always worth it. But for this to be done you need to develop an attitude that embraces the overall risk and initiatives involved when becoming your own boss or taking the lead as an employee.

An entrepreneur is an individual who is a visionary leader that believes in the impossible and is willing to risk, aggravate, or influence a market with a passion for creating a new and opportunistic change into an already stale system. They come up with ideas with full capacity to challenge the status quo.

They not only see paths and avenues of how it can benefit them personally but also their company and their employees financially and individually. Regardless of what the outcome is, entrepreneurs, accept and adapt to these challenging decisions and take full responsibility for better or for worst.

What do you have to change as an entrepreneur or as an employee managing a business?

The following is true for any entrepreneur or employee that wants to succeed.

HE OR SHE MUST BE WILLING TO DEVELOP A POSITIVE MINDSET

The mind is a very powerful tool that has the potential of producing extraordinary results if used aright. Any entrepreneur or employee that wants to succeed needs to learn the skill of rightfully engaging the mind because that is what it takes to build a true and successful business leader within a company.

Follow carefully below, as I reveal to you the five habits that help cultivate the overall mindset of a successful entrepreneur.

  1. Learn from Failure and Move On

“Failure means that I have exhausted all I know and to move higher I need to get more knowledge”

Having the right mindset about failure helps reduce unnecessary blames and gets you up on your feet quickly. One of my favorite quotes says, “Do not look at failure as a disappointment, but as an opportunity for success.” While failure and disappointment can be difficult, see this as a possibility. Instead of being ashamed of the problem and mishap that you have made, seek valuable lessons from those events. Use those times as a foundation for you to learn from your mistakes. Bear in mind, many successful entrepreneurs have made the same mistakes as you. The only difference is what you are able to do with them.

Read Also: 500+ Business Plans

  1. Be courageous and stand for your idea

While those personal skills are beneficial, truly successful entrepreneurs stand out by embracing their uniqueness. Celebrate what makes you and your company different. Stand out from the crowd and differentiate from your competitors. Think about Steve Jobs’ journey to success. While Windows already saturated a popular and loyal market, Jobs continued to follow his dreams. He even pushed the limits with the music and entertainment industry. If he did not do that, we would not have the innovative technology that is accessible to the public today. This is the mind of a succeeding entrepreneur.

Read Also: THE “SPARK” ENTREPRENEURS BRING TO LIFE |

  1. Embrace Life-Long Learning

“If you stop learning, you stop creating history. Eventually, you become history.”

The quickest way to stagnation is to be unopened and close-minded to new modes of thinking. As an entrepreneur, you are defined by your ability to adapt to change. To adjust to change is not accepting and moving on. Instead, it is learning the new expectations that can lead to success under the new conditions. This is important because at the end of the day, the public’s interest today will be incredibly different from a year from now (five years from now, ten years from now). To succeed with your business, you need to reinvent yourself and in order to do that, you need to be in a constant state of learning. This type of education will allow you to grow both personally and professionally as you continue to impact your company in a variety of ways.

  1. Set a few short-term Goals

“If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.”

Goal setting is another way for you to both inspire and challenge yourself in the future. But remember, for this to be beneficial, you need to set quality and tangible goals for both you and your company. Do not settle for simple goals you know you can hit. As a business leader, settings various goals or projections can only be beneficial because there is absolutely no downside to doing so. Yes, it can be disappointing to not hit them, but to see the passion, drive, and push from your workers can be almost everything. In reality, long-term goals and set visions can innovate your products, inspire and drive your workers, and enhance consistency all across the board.

This is the mind of a succeeding entrepreneur.

  1. Follow Through with your Goals

No matter what the goal or the dream is, make sure that you always follow through. Many people shy away from the entrepreneurial field because of the high amount of risk that goes into owning your own business. If you have an idea or you want to change direction for your business, do it! Just make sure that it is purposeful and beneficial for your company. Yes, there will be some hesitation in the decision. But that is normal. Just accept it and see where it can take you.

These four points are the mind of a succeeding entrepreneur.

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