Mentor, Phil Weinman

I’ve got a great mentor but I feel I have to battle for her time. Should I just accept this and adapt or look for other mentors?

StartupSmart /

I’ve got a great mentor but she’s involved with several other businesses, as well as mine. I feel I have to battle for her time. Should I just accept this and adapt or look for other mentors?

 

From my perspective, it’s all about value. You don’t need to be in front of your mentor every second of every day.

 

An occasional catch-up should really be enough. You need to have something to talk about when you do meet; it’s pointless if you’re meetings aren’t meaningful.

 

Having a mentor who is in high demand is not a bad thing. He or she is popular for a reason, so really an hour of time when it can be spared is probably much better than no time whatsoever with this person.

 

Currently, I would say I mentor well over 30 people at all stages in their businesses and careers.

 

Some are short term and some I have provided advice to for over 15 years. Some of these people I employ and some I partner with, some are former business partners and some I don’t work with at all.

 

Some are more demanding than others and frustrated about how little time they do spend with me but none of them have abandoned the arrangement. Some have sourced additional mentors – which of course, is absolutely fine.

 

I think you need to assess what value you are receiving from your mentor and be realistic about how much time with her you really need.

 

After all, I’d imagine you’d be fairly busy yourself. Find out about your mentor’s preferred method of communication.

 

There may be more time available to you if you can talk via email, Skype or phone.

 

I have my iPhone permanently glued to the palm of my hand so my guys know they can usually get me via email or phone if they have a quick question.

 

Another way to secure time and input from people you value is to consider offering them equity in your business.

 

This goes for anyone, not just mentors. You may find that by offering equity in your business venture, people are more inclined to give you the time you need.

 

I would discuss your concerns with your mentor and see what she thinks. She may be able to spare more time and if not, she might have some other suggestions for you.

 

There’s no point in simply complaining. If you see value in the relationship then definitely stick with it.

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