Who are you Mentoring?
by Ivan Williams
Research suggests 70 percent of small businesses receiving mentoring survive for five years or more, which is double the rate compared with non-mentored entrepreneurs, and they are 20 percent more likely to grow. We are engaged in the most crucial and eternal business of all, “Pouring into the life and ministry of those serving on the front lines of life and death,” It is vital that each of us as leaders take time to develop those serving alongside of us. I encourage you to consider the “who” you can mentor.
Mentoring doesn’t have to be formalized, structured, or systematized. I am convinced, though, that the most valuable forms of mentoring are done intentionally. Being intentional may mean waiting for the right time (i.e. when the person is open) to share a truth or learning principle. Being intentional also involves the appropriate approach (i.e. understanding how the other person integrates new information, knowledge, and experience and matching the ap-proach to that style). God waited forty years before speaking directly to Moses (talk about hard headed) and he used an approach that connected with Moses’ learning style – dramatic and kinesthetic.
There are a plethora of references to the forms and definitions of mentoring. One writer said mentoring is like giving a special gift away that God has given you to share. One last observation about mentoring and it may be the most essential. A mentor has the mentee’s best interests in mind. Applying that notion, a helpful mentor understands that any mentee could actually surpass him/her and the mentor is comfortable with that possibility. That’s when leaders really develop leaders. Become more intentional in dropping nuggets and developing others, and as one blogger put it, “when it is done well, mentoring is a beautiful symbiotic relationship, mutually beneficial and shockingly effective.”
Ps. Next month I will give a report and focus on internship and professional development.
Ivan L. Williams, Sr.