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[ Leadership ] What Qualities Does An Exceptional Mentor Have?

When I think about an ultimate mentor, the first character/image that comes to mind is
Yoda from Star Wars. Maybe it's because I am a Star Wars geek, but I'm guessing that 
I'm not the only one that will agree with me.

Think about it...despite how arrogant Luke was, Yoda managed to bring out the Jedi Knight
that was within him. Yoda saw the potential in Luke, gave support, offered challenges that 
made him learn and grow. As a mentor, Yoda provided a vision so that his "mentee" gained 
confidence and, eventually, independence.

Mentoring is more than advising, more than coaching, or giving directions. A real mentor 
takes personal responsibility for the learning of another person or group of people. A 
genuine mentor makes a commitment to the growth and development of others. 

For entrepreneurs, having a quality mentor is crucial to your success. I know this because
until I had a mentor that could show me a step by step process on how to make money, I 
struggled...over and over. 

Last week, a teammate and I did a Google + hangout where we discussed how to find a mentor

Here are the main qualities we discussed that make a quality mentor:

  • The mentor has a clear vision and step by step process to show others how to succeed. He/shedoes not waiver from the blueprint, nor get distracted by the next best thing. The mentor iswilling to show exactly how he/she is achieving that success, and makes it clear to mentees that if they want that success, they need to follow the plan. 
  • The mentor demonstrates a genuine interest in the mentees as individuals. Mentors take the time to actively listen and understand the mentee's goals and aspirations. The mentor builds a relationship of trust and respect by maintaining confidentiality, providing candid feedback, and honoring commitments that mentees make.
  • The mentor has the mindset of serving others. He/she understands that the true measure of success is not in what he/she achieves, but in what his/her mentees achieve. The mentor finds the most efficent and effective ways to teach and guide mentees. The mentor sees the potentialbefore the mentees may see it in themselves and challenges the mentees to reach beyond and push further than what they can see in front of them.
  • The mentor is a lifelong seeker of knowledge and ongoing personal development and instills those same values to his/her mentees. The mentor taps into his/her mind/body/spirit with a positive, healthy mindset. He/she knows the power of positivity and does not allow any negative energy to distract him/her from goals.
  • The mentor is willing to make difficult decisions and understands that those decisions affect not only his/her life, but the life of his/her mentees. The mentor may take risks, but they are not at the expense of others. This is what we call integrity, character and maintaining professionalism. The mentees may never know what decisions and sacrifices the mentor has had tomake to protect and serve others.

Final thoughts:

While mentoring may be difficult, it can also be extraordinarily rewarding, both for the mentor
and for all of the people he/she serves. For the mentor, joy comes from watching another flourish
and grow and genuinely sharing knowledge and experience. As a whole, renewal results when a group
of people extend their knowledge and skills, take on new responsibilities and perhaps eventually 
become mentors and leaders to others.

I want to personally thank everyone who has mentored me...I have had a select few that have made a
significant difference in my life. These people know exactly who they are and will forever be an 
important part of my life.

For those people I am mentoring, I want to let you know that it is my personal goal to be like Yoda, 
the ultimate mentor...or as one of my mentees calls me...Ninja!

May The Force Be With You...Refuse To Lose,

Renee Sullivan

(Click my pic to connect)

11 Regis Drive
Auburn MA 01501

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