Have Questions?

Contact us at suppsrvc@haaonline.org for further assistance


related content...

Product Service Council 
Learn more about the Mentors
 

Mentor Match

 PSC    

The Product Service Council mission statement : Supplier partners serving to facilitate growth and strengthen the industry.

HAA is dedicated to our supplier members and the Product Service Council is a group of active members ready to assist you and help you get the most from your membership. Whether you are brand new to HAA or perhaps a supplier looking for some guidance, a mentor might be just what you need.
Please click here to find out more about each council member and select your mentor!

When people think of mentoring, they often think of an older executive counseling a young upstart. The senior leader advises the junior employee on his career, how to navigate the world of work, and what he needs to do to get ahead. But mentoring has changed a lot in the last few decades. Just as the notion of a 50-year linear career with a single company or in one industry is outdated, so is the idea that career advice must come from a wise old sage. The traditional mentor-mentee relationship is not necessarily a thing of the past, but it's no longer the standard. Now, there are many ways to get the information and guidance you need.

Below are four myths: knowing the truth about them can help you figure out whom to turn to and how.

Myth #1: You have to find one perfect mentor

It's actually quite rare these days that people get through their career with only one mentor. In fact, many people have several advisors they turn to. In all likelihood, you'd benefit from having more than one mentor. Actually a handful of people who you can go to for advice and who you trust to have your best interests in mind is a great way to approach this. This network can be as large or small as you want, and it may even include your spouse or partner. Sometimes it can be helpful to get a variety of perspectives on an issue you are facing.

Myth #2: Mentoring is a formal long-term relationship

Because the world moves fast and people change jobs and careers more often, a long-term advising relationship may be unrealistic and unnecessary. Mentoring can be a one-hour mentoring session. We don't have to escalate it to a six-month or year-long event. Instead of focusing on the long term, think of mentoring as something you access when you need it. It may not be big agenda items that you're grappling with. You don't need to wait until you have some big thing in your career. In today's world, mentoring is more like Twitter and less like having a psychotherapy session.
Of course, the advice and guidance may be richer and more relevant if it comes from someone who knows you well and understands your goals. You still need to build relationships so that when you require advice, you have the connections in place. However, there may be times when you look to people who don't know you as well or at all to get one-off counsel from an outsider's perspective.

When people think of mentoring, they often think of an older executive counseling a young upstart. The senior leader advises the junior employee on his career, how to navigate the world of work, and what he needs to do to get ahead. But mentoring has changed a lot in the last few decades. Just as the notion of a 50-year linear career with a single company or in one industry is outdated, so is the idea that career advice must come from a wise old sage. The traditional mentor-mentee relationship is not necessarily a thing of the past, but it's no longer the standard. Now, there are many ways to get the information and guidance you need.

Myth #3: Mentoring is for junior people


Many people assume that they only need a mentor when they are first starting out in their careers. We used to think it was people at early stages of their career who needed mentoring, those just out of MBA programs. Now we understand that people at every stage benefit from this kind of assistance. Consider a more junior person who advises a senior person on things like new technology.

The reality is there are lots of points in a corporate career when you need a mentor. Though you shouldn't wait for them to come up, transitions are a particularly good time to seek out a mentor. Whether you are making a career change, taking on a new role, or contemplating leaving a job, advice from someone who has done it before can be helpful. You may need a mentor when the environment around you is changing rapidly and you haven't had a chance to keep up with the changes.

Myth #4: Mentoring is something more experienced people do out of the goodness of their hearts

It can be an honor to ask someone to be a mentor. But the respect isn't the only reason people agree to help. Mentoring should be useful to both parties involved. Before seeking out a mentor, think about what you have to offer him. Can you provide a unique perspective on the organization or his role? Do you bring valuable outside information that might help him be successful in his job? Whatever it is, be sure that you are clear what's in it for him. This does not have to be a direct barter. Even the promise of future help, if and when it's needed, can be enough to convince a mentor to give up his time and energy.

So, do you need mentoring?

Now that you have a better understanding of what mentoring can be - do you need it? The place to start is with self-assessment and to find out  the challenges in front of you right now and why. Then ask yourself, do you have the relational resources to handle those challenges? If the answer is no, it may be time to seek out a mentor or several. Remember that mentoring can take many shapes and forms—the key is to find the right kind of advice from the right person at the right time.

Principles to Remember

Do:

• Build a cadre of people you can turn to for advice when you need it
• Nurture relationships with people whose perspectives you respect
• Think of mentoring as both a long-term and short-term arrangement

Don't:

• Assume that because you are successful or experienced in your field that you don't need a mentor
• Rely on one person to help guide you in your career
• Expect to receive mentoring without providing anything in return

Here is a list of our Product Service Council members who had agreed to serve as mentors and are ready to help. Please click here to find out more about the council and select your mentor!