Emily Bain is a mentor of a friend who is launching a talent agency. She says: “It’s a real give back, a circle of good. Our mentors help us see the bigger picture and inspire us to be ambitious.
“Since I had the idea to set up Bain and Gray, as a natural networker, I found myself drawn to talking to the wiser individual to glean any advice I could. I had in 2008 without realising found my first Mentor. This was a family member who had had two companies and would assist me with a pearls of wisdom without a charge - necessary when in a start up.
“After a year of saturating his invaluable advice which definitely got me off the ground, I felt Bain and Gray had naturally outgrown him and his business acumen. I needed more and reached out to another mentor. A friend who had successfully built his company with a team of sales agents and was able to provide objective financial overviews. He worked in a totally unrelated industry but his advice and mentoring was impressive.
“Soon we moved to another contact. A FD who has worked for a very well-known and successful property tycoon. Now we were more structured, and focussed and set up quarterly meetings with agendas. However, after 9 months, I felt he had mentored me in as far as he could. I was proud, we were doing things right but needed someone more relevant to be our mentor.
“We now have a mentor who we have worked with for over two years. She is amazing. Inspirational, calm, encouraging. Very motivating and I absolutely love every one of her sessions. We are lucky that she comes from our industry and completely understands all aspect of recruitment. She makes Claire and I tip our business upside down and look at it in a totally different light. She has done wonders to our business in every aspect (I can list endless things here!!).
“She also treats us as women, and mothers and wives as well as business women - ensuring every angle is explored and considered which is so vital to us. She mentors us in many ways other than work which I think is key to a fantastic mentor. She listens.
“Her mentoring is so inspiring that I too have now started to share my knowledge to other women. I feel it should be passed down along the chain. I am so grateful for all the mentors who have inspired me along the way that I want to pass it on and relish in others successes. Friends who are keen to launch a new business and I have taken this one step further and am mentoring someone with their online company. It is a small step for us both but I am loving watching her grow.
“I believe good mentors/mentees connect and then grow together. Most successful relationships are like minded woman who naturally want to help. It’s someone who will disagree with you, push to boundaries and make you question everything.”
'I think good mentoring can only come out of a good chemistry fit and mutual respect for the parties involved. That's why I 100% believe it, when I read that finding the 'right' mentor is more crucial than having one at all.
'Essentially the relationship is about facilitating the mentees own aspirations for business or personal success. I certainly don't have all the answers to the challenges any of the mentees I have mentored in the past, but I have been able to come at things with a different perspective to encourage a different way of thinking. This usually leads to more considered decisions that have been more thoroughly thought through and led to a more positive outcome.
'A bi-product of either being a mentor or a mentee is having to be more considered with one’s time and becoming a better planner in life generally. There is a sense of obligation to your mentor or mentee to get things done and progress that piece of work or plan that event.
'I also think that in life generally, we all have different types of friendships in our immediate network and almost all of us have that friend that is also our most trusted advisor; it can also be true that you have that advisory element in a number of different friends, ie. one that always knows the right thing regarding parenting or the one that always has the best relationship advice! These type of friendships can be representative of that mentor/mentee relationship.'