I think, as business leaders, we often have a Superman complex. We rarely seek advice because we believe we should be able to do everything, know everything, and be everything to everyone at all times. I, too, suffer from this illusion more often than not.
Despite this, I have found that to truly harness success, we really do have to buckle up, get out there and explore the resources that are available to us. We all need outside perspectives to stay balanced and develop a holistic view of our world, whatever that may encompass. More importantly, we need to ensure we are sharing our knowledge and perspectives with those around us… especially with those who are following us.
Over the last few decades, the business world has changed. It seems to be “every man for himself”. As a result, lacking guidance, many would-be successful business leaders feel discouraged about how far up to the corporate mountain they’ll be able to climb without anyone to help them navigate the treacherous peaks and valleys that can be the corporate landscape. It’s up to us, as successful business leaders, to make ourselves available to help them navigate. One critical way we can do that is through mentoring.
What is interesting is that the terrain has changed – and most people don’t even realize it yet!
Mentoring has never been too effective, for a variety of reasons. It is a word that is bantered around without too much gravity. It traditionally has taken place within the four walls of the organization, between a senior person and a junior person within the same division, perhaps even the same business unit. They are assigned by Human Resources and one (or both) parties really have little interest in the partnership. The Mentor really has no idea what s/he is supposed to do or say and the Mentee feels awkward and more than a little intimidated by the Mentor s/he has been assigned to. A situation set up for success to be sure…
Why should mentoring be such a rote, limiting activity? How much can be learned within such close quarters from someone so similar to yourself? Can sustainable learning really take place within and environment of disinterest and intimidation?
There is certainly value in learning from someone with more experience than yourself, but there is so much more to growth and development available if we look further into the horizon! What about learning from people from other industries? Other companies? Other functions? Other countries? Other cultures? What if we could take that knowledge and apply it back into our companies for increased competitive advantage? What if we could leverage those insights into our lives for a lifetime of enrichment?
What if we could, as business leaders, leverage each other to learn and grow in such new and different ways that we really could make a sustainable difference in the world?
Will You Leverage Mentoring As An All Terrain Vehicle To Traverse The Challenges Of The Global Marketplace?
I invite you to engage the discussion and let us know how you will leverage mentoring to help yourself and others. Please feel free to contact me at Sheri.Mackey@LuminosityGlobal.com or by visiting our website at www.LuminosityGlobal.com. Check back next week for the next installment of Leadership Across Boundaries and Borders.