Friday, November 25, 2016

Mentoring and Master-Minding

One of the most important - and overlooked - roles of a manager is being a mentor to others. Many people have a 1940's "command and control" approach to business. But as I pointed out a little while back, telling people to Just Do It is often very bad advice.

People need to be instructed, guided, and helped to improve. You're not in a competition with your employees: When they do well, your company does well. So constantly helping them to improve is good for every one.

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You should also be open to being mentored. That means having the humility to seek advice from others. I love the master mind groups I belong to. They allow me to talk about challenges I face and get feedback from people I trust.

As a general rule, master mind meetings start with a quick discussion of what's changed since last time. Then members take turns talking about a challenge they face and getting ideas from the other members.

I have used my master mind groups to get feedback on client relationships, naming products, pricing, employee issues, productivity tips, and so much more. The best part of a meeting is often hearing advice given to someone else. After all, just because we didn't bring up an issue doesn't mean we don't have that issue.

And, in general, having business-focused discussions will improve your business in the long run. You get in the habit of working "on" your business. You also get a boatload of good tips and advice.

Overall, you should be in a never-ending stream of mentoring and being mentored. All of us can learn from others. And the world keeps changing so things that worked last year don't work as well this year. So we have to keep evolving.

It's another example where education in all its forms should be part of your continuing personal and professional growth.


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