Let’s Fix Work Episode 78
One of my biggest professional regrets in the world of HR was not having a mentor. I’m not alone. Many of you don’t have mentors either and I know it because you email me and ask me questions about how to find a mentor. Or you ask what to do once you have a mentor, how not to lose that person or mess that relationship up. Since I’m not qualified to answer questions about mentorship, I thought I would invite an expert onto the show who can. This week’s guest is Mike Sipple, Jr. who is a mentor to mentors, seriously.
Mike is the President of Centennial, Inc., the Founder and CEO of the Talent Magnet Institute and he’s the host of the Talent Magnet Institute podcast. That’s a lot of jobs. I don’t know how this man finds time to mentor, but he does. He mentors many people within human resources and recruiting. He teaches mentorship, he instructs, he leads, and he guides. And he is working to elevate the way mentorship is delivered in organizations all across the world. So if you want to raise your game as a worker, as a leader, as a human being or maybe, as a mentor, sit tight and listen to this episode of Let’s Fix Work.
In this episode, you’ll hear:
- Why mentorship and mentoring is so important to Mike
- Holistic leadership and the importance of being focused on our whole selves
- What makes someone qualified to be a good mentor and Mike answers the question, “Can you be a good mentor if you are not a leader?”
- Where to find a mentor and how to ask someone to be your mentor
- The importance of taking an active role in learning and how to best prepare for a meeting with your mentor
- The appropriate amount of meetings that you should have with a formal mentor
- The difference between a mentor and a coach
- Knowing when it’s time to pivot or move on from your current mentor
- How to know when a mentor/mentee relationship is going well versus some signs when it’s not
“Life is not a solo sport. If you feel like you’re the only one, like you’re by yourself, that it is a solo sport and no one understands, now is a wonderful time to seek out a mentor.” Mike Sipple, Jr.
WHAT MAKES SOMEONE QUALIFIED TO BE A GOOD MENTOR?
Good mentors are vulnerable and they’re willing to share not only the good things, the successes, but also the failures, the moments where they didn’t necessarily live up to their own expectations and they’re willing to just be rigorously and radically honest about it. All of us trip, all of us make mistakes, and yet we all have that experience to live from and can help others who might be living through something that I’ve gone through before.
WHERE CAN YOU FIND A MENTOR AND HOW DO YOU ASK SOMEONE TO BE YOUR MENTOR?
Part of finding a mentor is identifying that person that you want to learn from. There’s something about the energy, the passion, the experience that you’ve heard about that this person’s been through in the past and that you can see them live through that. I think that’s a person you can step in and learn from. And you can simply learn from that person and say, “Hey, I’d love to spend time with you.”
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MENTOR AND A COACH?
A mentor is someone who will offer their guidance and wisdom to you. Whereas a coach is someone who is going to help you work through a particular process.
WHAT ARE SOME QUALITIES THAT SHOULD BE A PART OF A GOOD MENTOR/MENTEE RELATIONSHIP?
There should be joy and enjoyment in the relationship. Where even if the mentee is in a hard spot that you can say, “I see myself in her, I see myself in him. I would love to help this person, guide them, and provide some wisdom.” Also, being open to learning from your mentee (or vice versa, of course). You both bring different life experiences to the table and bring much to the conversation of things that you never thought about. And finally, not being afraid to provide feedback, this is so important in a mentor/mentee relationship. A mentor should always be able to offer open feedback and the mentee should be open to receiving it. While certain feedback might sting when hearing it, the reality is that’s the right thing to do.
Resources from this episode:
Connect with Mike, join his community, and become a talent magnet at: www.mikesipplejr.com
Episode 76: Enterprise Podcast Strategies with Danny Ozment