Experience is most definitely a great teacher. But sometimes, one also has to find a person who will show the ropes and will lead them to success.
This is why there is such a thing as mentorship—and mentorship is one of the most important reasons why I got to where I am today. This is why I want to talk to you about what mentorship is and the role of a mentor in one’s life.
I believe I have already shared with you how I got into property development. But just for the sake of those who haven’t read anything about my background, I was a high school dropout. I didn’t know what I was doing nor did I know what will I be in the future. I was so confused about what I want to do with my life—or what I really want to do in general. It was then, after watching my grandfather and my father growing up when I realized what I wanted to be in the future.
My grandfather was a builder while my father is a property developer. I loved being around them on construction sites so I was very much familiar with the building industry. In other words, my first mentors were the two of them. Without their guidance, I don’t think I would know how to actually pull it off.
So what is mentorship?
Mentorship, by definition, is a relationship that occurs between an experienced professional and a less experienced individual. It really doesn’t matter how old the mentor is just as long as the mentor is more knowledgeable in a particular field than the person who is being mentored. The goal of mentorship is to share the mentor’s expertise to provide different kinds of support mostly career-wise but maybe even on a personal level. The communication that happens between these two individuals creates a strong bond out of a mutual connection. Mentoring is a process that should be borne out of a good relationship where there is communication.
What is the role of a mentor?
The role of a mentor, in general, is to be the person to provide support to the protégé or protégéé the individual who will receive the mentorship. The mentor must pass on or transmit the knowledge he/she has acquired for years to another person, particularly regarding career or professional development. The role of a mentor does not necessarily stop with professional pieces of advice or guidance, sometimes, it can go on a personal level because of the relationship that’s built.
What should a mentor and a protégé/protégéé always remember?
It is important to build that trust. Not everyone could have the same experience I had were the two closest people in my life became my mentors—others may find that relationship with a stranger. But whoever that is, make sure that there are honesty and trust. Without these two, the mentorship process could just backfire. At the same time, mentors could become the strongest connections in the industry. You know what they say, if you want to succeed in something, try not to burn bridges.