The Process of connecting to the right type of Mentor for your Startup is not as easy as it seems. You may come across many mentors during Startup meetups or Events or in your network, but finding and connecting to the ideal Mentor for your Startup is a task. We have found some qualities which can assist your Startup to find a right Mentor. Not just for your Startup but Mentors are important from a personal development point of view also for an Entrepreneur.
1. Level of Involvement : It is important that the Mentor you choose has an equal amount of level of engagement as yours in the process of scaling your Startup. A right Mentor is one who would not just work with your Startup for his/her rewards but would like to see you & your Startup succeed in every manner.
2. Mentor must be Available : In today's business world of digital / virtual presence, one of the most important factor is the presence of Mentor at your end , not just virtual, but physical. It also means, the mentor you choose must have the time to mentor your startup . Tight schedules of Mentors are not advised as it may be at the cost of quality of Mentorship provided to your Startup.
3. Risk Taker : A true Mentor is one who encourages your Startup to venture into things that may sound risky for your business. A Mentor is a person who would not let you stay for a longer period in your Comfort zone. Only Risk Takers are proved to be one successful startups & this is because they were morally backed & supported by their mentors .
4. Comfort Levels of Communication : Unless you are not able to communicate your queries & doubts to the Mentor comfortably , it is of no point to get Mentorship from any such person. A Relationship between a Mentor & a Startup Entrepreneur / Startup Team must be an Open relationship, where trust is a major factor. Besides having a Formal Mentor/ Mentee relationship , it is also necessary to have a friendly talk sometimes just to see that you as a Mentee get the maximum & the Best out of the Mentor you choose. A good communication rapport with your mentor can help you to understand the solutions provided by the Mentor for complex problems you may come across, in a simple way.
5. Expertize & Experienced : Needless to say Mentors must experts in the field they provide mentorship. A wrong choice of Mentor may land up your goals in a fix. Getting a well known , experienced, talented with skill sets that suits your Startup needs, may also help your Startup to get associated with businesses with whom the Mentor is associated. Industry credibility plays a major aspect here in choosing the right mentor.
6. Criticism & Feedback Provider : By criticism here we mean a constructive one . A Good mentor always finds scope for improvements in the functioning of the Startup business.It is the mentor's responsibility in a way to find out the weak areas of the Startup & guide the Startup to improve over it. It is not just that they [Mentors] encourage your startup for scaling, but in the process of encouraging , a mentor may also discourage your Startup for not entering into certain unprofitable zones. Also, a mentor is good in providing timely feedback to Entrepreneur as to how the Startup progresses under the mentorship .
There are many other factors which you may consider while choosing a mentor, such as the Educational qualifications. languages known, the culture to which the mentor belongs to, Mentoring Fees which is charged, the tenure of mentorship program etc. In a way , you may look out for a long term guide cum friend & a support for your Startup to bring out the best from your business in long run.