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Professional Mentoring: How Business Management Consultants Can Help

By Lisa Woods (1109 words)
Posted in Professional Development on February 26, 2013

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Passed over for a promotion? Unsure of how to solve a problem in your department? Choose wisely how you proceed, keeping in mind Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity: “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Self-doubt is not the answer, nor is a common tendency to "just get by”, they both get in your way of doing things differently. Don’t forget that your employer recognized your potential when he or she hired you, so you have the skills; maybe you just need some expert intervention to advance you and your business to the next level.  Finding & Acquiring capable & trustworthy external professional mentoring is a sound investment to consider.

 

Finding capable external support that best fits your needs in the form of a professional mentor, coach or business management consultant requires diligent research; you will reap the dividends if you choose wisely. Here are some tips to identify candidates:

 

  • First identify what challenges you or your company face and then seek out professionals who can best support your efforts. They may be local or national; do not limit yourself when starting your search.  Experience is more important than location.
  • Consult management blogs (a daily diary of professional development tips, resources and trending discussion topics) and business websites to discover potential mentors.
  • Ask specific questions to learn about the mentor's experience and his or her mentoring style.
  • Obtain a resume or curriculum vitae (CV), plus at least three references from the potential mentor.
  • Contact the references and discuss the mentor's own strengths and weaknesses.
  • Verify the mentor's employment and education. Avoid anyone who will not provide the information you request.

 

Acquiring a mentor you trust is essential for the relationship to succeed. It can be intimidating bringing in an outsider; not having a long-term relationship with them requires a lot of trust without a lot of time to build it.

 

Once you do find a professional coach or business management consultant that meets your criteria, establish a clear working relationship to build trust quickly.  Here’s how:

  • Work together with your mentor to create/document a very specific term sheet for the working relationship including budget, timeline and type of interaction, definition of the support needed, deliverables and success parameters.
  • Be honest with your professional mentor. Advise him or her of your strengths, but most importantly, tell your mentor about your weaknesses.
  • Outline your goals for the immediate future, the next five years and even the next ten years. Defining expectations will provide the necessary structure the relationship needs, and pushing you to your optimum performance will be easier if the mentor has all of your professional and personal information at his or her disposal.
  • Keep communication open. Providing support to you will likewise be easier if there is a mutual respect between you and your mentor.

 

Finding the right match between you and a professional mentor, business management consultant or coach, could mean great success for you and your company. Wherever you are professionally, mentors or business management consultants can help. Choosing to hire a professional mentor is a wise choice in today's turbulent times.

 

Here are some examples where professional mentoring can help:

  • Someone to lead a due diligence effort, or implement an IT transition. 
  • Maybe your company has been losing market share and you need someone to come in and conduct internal and external surveys of the situation making recommendations for a strategy to rebound. 
  • Maybe your company has gained some new contracts and it makes more sense to hire temporary experts to fulfill them rather than increase your permanent workforce. 
  • Maybe you are having difficulty transitioning your company or department to where you need them to be and require a seasoned professional to coach you through how to make the changes more effectively.

 

Did you know that ManagingAmericans.com provides free access to coaches and business management consultants?  We have 25 communities where you can ask an expert your questions, as well as review mentor bios/qualifications. Our management blogs contain training materials designed to solve problems with practical advice to help you and your company succeed.  Please join us, it’s free, and a great way to build relationships with qualified mentors.

 

Take control of your own professional development today by taking our self-assessment quiz.  It is a free download that measures your leadership, management, job performance and communication skills.

 

Good Luck!

 

 

 

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Written by Lisa WoodsPresident & CEO ManagingAmericans.com

Lisa is a successful entrepreneur, world-class marketing strategist, dynamic business leader & author with more than 20 years experience leading, managing and driving growth in the corporate world. Today she provides Management Tools, Do-It-Yourself Training, and Business Assessments for small to mid size companies, Lisa utilizes her experience with integration techniques, organizational and cultural overhauls, financial turnarounds and strategic revitalization to help other companies succeed.  Closing the gap between strategy and hierarchy through the use of effective communication skills, Lisa's techniques successfully develop employees into exceptional leaders, results driven managers and passionate team contributors that collectively exceed objectives.

 

Do you have a question for Lisa?  Post it in our Executive Leadership Community, she will be happy to help: Ask an Expert

 

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