Monday, August 26, 2019

We all need professional mentoring

A while back I started to offer mentoring and coaching to design professionals. It has been exciting. Even though I have been doing this kind of mentoring and coaching for a very long time, every new meeting and session leads to new insights. Some of the most important insights are simple and obvious.

The most simple insight is that whether you are successful or not in your job, you need to talk about your situation, your career, with someone who is not involved in your workplace, and someone who is not your family or friend. You need an external view. Someone who can challenge you and offer new perspectives. You need someone who actually doesn't know you too well. 

Professional mentoring is about your whole life. You cannot separate your professional life from the rest of your life. This is also one reason why good mentoring is problematic to get from family and friends who are entangled in your life outside work. They are personally involved in what they are trying to mentor you about.

Professional mentoring is about how to combine and compose all levels a professional position: the mind set, knowledge set, skill set, and tool set. There is no simple division possible. You cannot 'fix' your career by only dealing with one level. They are intermingled. 

So, if you do not have a professional mentor. Find one. You do need one.


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