Updated August 25, 2013Doc Sheldon
Merriam-Webster defines mentor thus: mentor: a trusted counselor or guide.
Most of us have been on one side or the other (ideally, both) sides of a mentor relationship. I know I’ve had the benefit of receiving a great deal of assistance over the years, not only in terms of techniques and methodology, but also in ways that helped me forge my own business philosophy.
Some of the people that helped me develop my skills in business, management, engineering and SEO… even my personal character… are no longer around. A few of my most recent mentors, though, in the SEO arena, are still kicking. I’ve let most of them know how much I value the sharing of their ideas and opinions. And this post will remind me to ensure that I’ve let all of them know how much I appreciate it.
Paying it forward by being a mentor
I had a wonderful business mentor several decades ago, that was leaving the area, so I made it a point to tell him that I could never pay back what he’d given me. His response was “You’re right…. you can’t.”
But he immediately followed up with “So you’ll have to pay it forward”. So I’ve made it a point, ever since, to try to share what little wisdom I’ve accumulated over the years, with anyone that’s inclined to learn. (I’m certainly not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I figure Darwin may have been right… if I was a total idiot, I’d probably have been killed off long ago.)
Anyway, this is an opportunity to name one or more people that have had a great influence on you, professionally, personally or both, and publicly call them out as your mentors. You may already have make your gratitude known to them… but wouldn’t it be nice to let the rest of the world know how much you appreciate your mentors, too?
This isn’t a popularity contest and it isn’t about name-dropping or currying favor. It’s just about letting folks know that you got a lot of value from someone that shared with you just because they thought you might benefit from it. It’s a chance to publicly thank someone and recognize the value that mentorship brings to both parties.
So if you’ve had the pleasure of being mentored by someone, drop their name in the hat. There won’t be any voting, no prizes and no “Mentor of the Year” award… only you know how much value you received, anyway. Feel free to share as much or as little as you like. Tweet ’em with #DSCMyMentor.