Why Leaders Should Always Mentor

Every day we strive to learn a little bit more. It may be something simple, or a complex task.

But as we weave in and out of our daily practices, it all comes together in a unique way. We think differently. We understand how things fit together. We see the flow in an entirely distinctive way from others around us.

Chances are you’ve never sat down and contemplated all you know. It’s not something we consider. Until someone around us asks a question, and we pay attention to the answers we can provide. That’s the day you change. That’s the day your leadership skills move to the next level.

Self-Awareness Can Transform Your Leadership Skills

Most of us fall into leadership in the normal way. We work hard, get promoted. Eventually, we’re put in charge.

Then the training begins. To be an effective leader, you’ll start honing in on critical leadership skills. Becoming a people person. Lead instead of following. And become a lifelong learner. You change. You grow. More out of necessity than anything else.

But to become a great leader requires feedback. You can’t dish it out without knowing the impact it has. And the more you learn about how you impact those around you, the better you can be at helping them move forward too.

Communication is key. Provide guidance. Ask questions. Deliver direction through discussions and problems. This is a two-way street. Watching how a mentee uses your insights will only give you more value in what you know. Things you take for granted can suddenly become valuable teaching material. Because you think about things in a unique way.

Mentoring Separates Doers From The Leaders

A part of a leader’s job is to watch for hidden talent. To find the diamonds in the rough. The employees that can easily be taken to the next level, given more responsibility, and become a leader in their own right in the future. It’s always an ebb-and-flow environment, one that helps your organization continue to grow.

We’re in a crossover business society right now. In almost all organizations, departments are transcending upon each other, creating more sophisticated alliances between each.

In the IT world, for example, some of the most interesting projects they can take on no longer happen in the IT department. It’s in other areas, like marketing or finance. IT leaders are figuring out that creating self-serving internal policies and programs no longer work across the board. Instead, IT is taking ideas and suggestions for better service, better performance, and integrating solutions into every department company-wide.

Someone in marketing may have an MBA, be well versed in strategic business applications, and have an excellent understanding of systems design. But what they’re missing is the skills needed to move to the next level.

The mentor/mentee relationship can bring talent across the board, and make them richer, more diverse employees that can offer greater benefits overall. With a little training, a little coaching, they can move your company into a solid, profitable direction.

How do you develop the mentor/mentee relationships within your organization?