Updated: Apr 27, 2020
Throughout our younger life, we became very reliant on guidance; parents, tutors, siblings. We worked to deadlines, we followed set programmes at school, we had bedtimes, we handed in homework. Then we get into adult life, and suddenly we have to parent ourselves. We want to do big things, but at the same time, life can take away with you.⠀
What is a mentor? "a person who gives a younger or less experienced person help and advice over a period of time, especially at work." In the veterinary sense, this could be a casual mentorship from an experienced colleague, private one-to-one mentorship with a veterinary specific mentor, or group mentoring such as via Dr. Dave Nicol's Vet-X (of which I unashamedly plug being one of their European mentors, wishing I had this when I graduated).
Why do you need a mentor?⠀
1) It helps you skip steps. Often, your mentor has already done what you want to do; this is not just as a new graduate, this is at all stages of your career. They've found out what works, and their knowledge could help you jump several rungs up the ladder and avoid pitfalls. If you have a specific niché that you wish to pursue, seeking a mentor who has already made it in this field can be infinitely useful.
2) Accountability. Isn't it amazing that we are quite happy to get something done for someone else, but less so when it's just for us? Mentorship helps progression and keeps you on track. Each programme and mentor will be different, but often progress updates are requested and tasks may need performing by certain dates.
3) A fresh point of view. An experienced pair of eyes can cast a different perspective on a situation, that might be the key you need.⠀
4) Contacts and leads. Often, mentors are experienced in an industry and have many routes they can help to open up for you. These may be people and influencers that you might never usually meet otherwise.⠀
5) Support and encouragement. Humans are goal driven beings, and having a cheerleader to help push you towards a goal can really help. Working towards a target is rewarding on the good days, but on those where you really don't feel like it, having a mentor can push you through those roadblocks and reach success.
I myself have a brilliant mentor, Dr.Spencer Pool who is one of Bob Proctor's Inner Circle consultants. We met at a diversification for doctor's conference and clicked straight away. Spencer took me through the Proctor Gallagher Thinking Into Results programme, which skyrocketed my career and income. I am also incredibly lucky to have Liz Ivory and Richard Wilkins as coaches, who taught me Broadband Consciousness; this solidified by self worth and gave me a solid foundation on which to try and do anything new, and quite honestly saved my life.