The importance of finding a business mentor

Mentoring doesn't have to be an extravagance when you’re bootstrapping and investing every spare cent into growing your business

The importance of finding a business mentor

Did you know there are over 140,000 small businesses in South Australia? More than 60% of those are sole traders. And another 25% employ between one and four people. That’s a lot of people with their heads down and their bums up, working hard to make their small business a success.

The good news is that South Australia has a higher small business survival rate than the rest of Australia (the four-year survival rate for South Aussie small businesses is just over 66% vs around 64% in NSW and VIC). I like to think it’s because we’re too stubborn to let those eastern states beat us!

The better news is there are things you can do to increase your chances of not just surviving but thriving. Things like strategic planning, investing in relevant training, setting clear objectives and KPI’s and having a mentor.

Mentoring doesn’t have to be an extravagance when you’re bootstrapping and investing every spare cent into growing your business

What if I told you that a survey carried out in the US a few years ago found that having a mentor doubled the chance of business survival? Would you still consider a mentor an extravagance? Or would you think of a mentor as a valuable business asset with the potential for a huge return on investment?

I’m a big fan of mentoring. I’ve had many different mentors throughout my business journey and each of them has changed my life, and my business, in different ways. I engaged my very first mentor because I knew what I wanted to achieve with my business, but I needed expert advice and guidance to help me get there. And that’s exactly what my first mentor provided – without him my business journey would have looked very different.

It’s worth taking the time to research and find the right mentor (or mentors) for you. You might like to approach a professional mentor, or you might prefer someone who has specific industry or personal experience that inspires you.

Creative ways to afford a business mentor

It can be a bit daunting asking someone to be your mentor, so here are my tips. Be honest and upfront when you approach them. Think of it as a pitch. You want to sell yourself and convince the mentor that you’ll work well together. It’s also important to be considerate of their time and don’t expect people to give their time away. It’s fine to negotiate a fee but be reasonable and fair.

If paid mentoring is simply out of reach for the time being, there are other ways you can tap into the experience and knowledge of people you admire.

  • Follow successful people – harvest the pearls of wisdom they share on social media and other digital platforms
  • Listen to podcasts – there are many fantastic topics to choose from and listening on demand is so convenient
  • Look to your peers for guidance – a group mentoring model like Tammy’s Table can be an affordable alternative to one-on-one mentoring

Ready to find a mentor?

If you’d like to try group mentoring, drop me an email and I’ll put you on the waitlist for our next Tammy’s Table Taster event. At just $47 for a 90-minute Table meeting it’s a low-risk way to experience group mentoring and decide if it’s right for you. Click here to read more about Tammy’s Table on our website.

Or if you’re ready to take the leap and double your chances of business success, contact me now for a chat about individual mentoring.

I’ll let you in on a secret. If you book a series of 3 x 1 hour monthly individual mentoring sessions with me, there’s a way you can get Tammy’s Table membership for free! Contact me for details.

Ready to become a better business owner?

Register your interest in Tammy’s Table. A community of like-minded business owners and managers who recognise the value of connecting regularly with their peers to celebrate achievements, share experiences and knowledge and help each other be more successful as leaders.

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