If you have spent some time reviewing articles related to entrepreneurship, chances are that you come across online articles recommending that you find someone who can serve as your advisor and mentor. As far as good advice goes, this is probably one of the best; after all, business mentors are teachers whom you can turn to for guidance, but the reality is that most entrepreneurs end up developing their business idea on their own and without an advisor.
Some entrepreneurs are headstrong and believe that they can strike out on their own, and why not? Isn’t this the American way? Perhaps, but even wildly successful billionaires such as Warren Buffett admit that a great part of their success is owed to mentors; in Buffett’s specific case, he had Charlie Munger, a former real estate attorney who had always set his sights on managing investment portfolios. According to a 2018 CNBC profile on Buffett, Munger was 35 years old and working at the same grocery store; they started talking about investment ideas and discovered that they had a lot in common. Buffett decided that Munger was someone he needed to keep close as he ventured into investing, and the rest is history.
The realization that you need a business mentor is often made after you meet the person, this was the case with Buffett, and it resulted in Munger becoming a business partner. Let’s keep in mind that Munger came from within Buffett’s close network; this happens to be the most common way of finding business mentors.
When You Are In Over Your Head
Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs start seeking mentorship after they realize that their business idea is far more complex than they initially assumed. When this happens, the entrepreneur may have already hit a few roadblocks and suffered some setbacks; when this is the case, the mentor may end up rescuing the business and becoming a partner. In some cases, the savior may end up becoming the business principal, particularly if a monetary bailout was provided.
As long as you are open to growing and improving as a business owner, seeking a mentor is highly recommended. If deep inside you know that you are a combative self-starter, you can still benefit from mentorship, but you will probably draw the line at your mentor becoming a business partner.
The Hidden Advantage of Business Mentors
Entrepreneurs who forego mentorship and find success are often surprised when their key staff members become key advisors. Employees can turn into motivators business owners who do not want to disappoint those individuals who have helped them reach certain goals, and this is a hidden advantage of mentorship.
Having someone with whom you can share your game plan, ideas and desired objectives can be crucial in terms of entrepreneurial success. Your mentor does not have to be a seasoned business professional; in some cases, he or she can be a close friend, a confidant, a spouse, or a relative. In the end: yes, you really need a mentor if you dream of becoming a successful entrepreneur.