Ramesh Sharma is CEO of TPG UK and founder of Tech City News. In this article, he discusses how having a mentor can help entrepreneurs.
Being a business owner, entrepreneur, or whatever you choose to call yourself can be lonely.
You will be working long hours, living and breathing every aspect of your business from making sure there are toilet rolls in the bathroom, to whether to change how a product is made.
You will thrive and falter by your own decisions.
Wouldn’t it be great if you had someone with knowledge, calm and full of confidence in your abilities to listen, guide and advise you every now and then?
This is exactly what a mentor can do, but if you are still not sure whether working with a mentor is right for you, here are three compelling reasons:
As you go along in business, you will come across all kinds of pitfalls and ride many a wave.
This doesn’t mean that a mentor is a know-it-all, but they do have an insight and wisdom about some aspects of business that you may find useful.
They can also challenge you and your way of thinking by asking crucial questions, such as “why?”.
Mentors are shrewd enough to know they don’t have all the answers.
Networks and contacts
For many entrepreneurs, getting a foot in the door or sitting at someone’s table is the small opening that they need to get their business growing.
Mentors tend to be people who have been around for some time in the business world and have an impressive array of contacts.
A good mentor will do more than provide you with their address book; in essence this is not what being a mentor is about.
They will have connections with strong business leaders and being able to tap into this, and have an appreciation of the business world, is just as important as getting more sales.
Advice and guidance
There are times when you need it.
On one hand, you want to do this alone, you want to take the path less trodden and you want to live and die by your own decisions.
All credit to you because this is entrepreneurial spirit at its most raw.
There are times, however, when you cannot see the wood for the trees, so a mentor is the person who has that one nugget of advice, a piece of sheer brilliance lurking in the years of experience.