Don't have a mentor for career guidance? Here's what you should do
It is often advised that we find a mentor that can provide career guidance, as well as the motivational support we need to be better at our jobs. But finding the right person to be your mentor isn’t a simple task, and it’s possible that there will be times where you do not have a mentor. If that’s the situation you find yourself in, here are some things you can do to light up your own career path.
Read success stories
If finding a mentor proves impossible but you are in need of advice or a guiding hand, why not check out articles, books or podcasts of an industry leader you admire? Look up life stories of people that have worked in the career path you’d like to see yourself in and pay close attention to the things they had to do, as well as the pitfalls they might have come across. This can be especially helpful for introverts, because you get the exposure without the daunting need for verbal interaction.
The internet is your friend
One of the benefits of having a mentor is having the occasional motivation to stretch your skills – but that is something you can do that on your own, as well. Think about where you want to be and the job you want to have, and then look up the skills you need to get there. Online courses are easily accessible, and most of them offer certifications that you could use to make yourself an ideal candidate for the position of your dreams.
Clearly defining objectives is something that a mentor often talks about with their mentee – it’s a good way to influence direction and maintain motivation. But goal-setting is something you can absolutely do on your own. From anything between having a short conversation with your manager about your performance, to bigger life decisions like going back to school to get the qualifications you need, every goal you set and meet is one step closer to fulfilling your dreams.
Grab a coffee with someone influential
Having a mentor is never a determining factor when it comes to achieving success. Rather, a mentor is a pillar of support and a resource for direction. Seek this out in people, and observe them closely. People love talking about themselves, so make a polite request to learn more about what it takes to achieve their success. If there’s someone at your company or in your network that you think would be interesting to speak with, don’t hesitate to email someone to get yourself booked into their schedule. You’ll gain great insight and a perhaps even a new sense of direction.
Our biggest advice for you is to remain proactive. Put in the effort: take that online class, send that email, and achieve those goals. You can always find good articles on the Monster career center, and the internet is a good tool to use when it comes to deciding on what milestones you need to meet to get you where you want to be.