Mentoring helps move us further and faster. We cannot maximize our impact by myself. We need voices in our life, development, and someone helps us see our blind spots.
Mentoring in the Bible:
“Moses took Joshua up the mountain to be with God.” – Exodus 24:12-14
“One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.” – Psalm 145:4
“Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.” – Proverbs 9:9 (ESV)
“…Timothy has been a devoted son to me…” – Phil 2:20-22
The why, who, and how of mentoring
Three mentoring myths:
Star Wars Myth – there is no one out there who has all the answers for me other than Jesus. Sometimes we have a bar too high.
American Idol Myth – one day I will be discovered.
MegaMillions Lottery Myth – I have no responsibility. Growth will just happen to me.
Mindsets We All Need About Mentoring
All successful people have help – even if you can’t see it.
Often the more successful a person is the more coaches they have in their life.
Start where you are.
Don’t compare or judge. No place or situation is too small to grow.
Wisdom from Orville Taylor, a 70 year old pastor not many will know
- “A clear understanding prevents and misunderstanding.”
- “It is one thing to hear and another thing to listen.”
- “Always make room for God to work a miracle – after all He is God.”
- “Get your financial house in order” – so you have a little seed when God brings an opportunity.
- “Trust God” – even when you don’t understand, and there will be times you don’t.
- “Read your way full” – keep standing on the Word of God.
- “Think your way clear” – let God’s wisdom by your guide.
- “Pray yourself hot” – the war room is the prayer room.
- “Turn yourself loose” – be you, be courageous, be bold, be faith-filled.
Where do I need to grow? In vision, communication, excellence, attitude, tenacity, relationships, or character?
You can learn from others’ experiences or learn on your own.
Borrow someone else’s 10,000 hours (which is the amount of time it takes to become an expert).
Steps to Take:
1. Identify Growth Areas.
Where do I feel stuck?
What am I struggling with?
Where are my strengths?
What is required in me in my role?
What is holding me back?
Rather than asking a mentor: “What do you think I need to change?”
Instead be able to say: “This is an area of my life I need to change.”
2. Look around.
Who can help me in this area?
Most times the person we need as a mentor is 1 later away from me. More than likely you know someone who knows the person you need.
3. Ask for time.
Successful people want to invest in others. Don’t say “no” for someone else. “I think you could really help me in one area of my life. Can I have one hour of your time to ask you some questions?”
Be ok with a “no” or a “not right now.”
4. Prepare beforehand.
Have 5-7 questions ready. If not prepared then we ended up talking about ourselves and not listening.
5. Show value.
Show up early. Most successful people consider it disrespectful to be late.
Take notes (better in a journal than on my phone).
6. End early.
Honor the person’s time, and it will open the door for more time.
3-5 minutes early makes a difference to successful time.
7. Say thank you.
Not just in the meeting but reach out afterwards with a note or a gift of some kind.
Do your best to stand out so they may be willing to help you again.
Best way to thank a mentor is let them know the ways you are applying their wisdom.
What if we tithed our time to developing our leadership? That’s 4 hours per week. You can probably do all you need to get done in 90% of the time I am currently doing it!
Where would I be in 1 year if I did this?!
Be open to mentor someone else.