What mentors get out of it
At Jennings Business Mentors the 24 mentors are all volunteers. They also run their own businesses, so are pretty busy most of the time, and they still volunteer to be a mentor. Some clients ask why they do it. What do they get out of it?
To answer this question you have to accept that business owners do not endlessly chase profit. There are other objectives to running a business, such as fulfilment. Amongst the many joys of running your own business are excitement of the journey, a sense of achievement, and the ability to be financially and emotionally independent.
Furthermore a mentor gets a vicarious pleasure from helping another business owner in their journey. It is indeed a joy to be able to support another person, help them avoid pitfalls, and to watch from the side-lines as they grow.
Care for another cannot be measured by financial return. It is not the case that the more you pay, the better the service. The quality of the service depends instead on the commitment of the provider. Our mentors are committed because they care.
Bear in mind also that mentors are open to learning from their clients, and they do. Many have reported back to me how in a discussion with a client they were able to resolve some of their own business issues.
And finally mentors are taught to listen and to not fix clients problems. Instead as a result of the discussion the client is usually able to work it out for themselves. This model also works within the mentors own business, and many have practiced ‘not fixing’ in their teams. It is the beginning of a useful process of letting go of control to allow their team members more autonomy. It is the beginning of the transition from manager to leader.