Owning your own business is hard. You need to be in touch with all aspects of your operations, stay focused on your short-, mid-, and long-term goals, know your customers inside and out, keep up with the latest trends, somehow make time for yourself…the responsibilities are seemingly endless. As business owners for over thirty years, we know first-hand the challenges you face. Something that helped us, as it has helped many others, is having a business mentor.
A business mentor is an experienced businessperson, who may or may not be in your field. This individual uses their personal knowledge and experiences to help guide your entrepreneurship toward success. A mentor is not a business partner; rather, they are an objective third party who gives you objective views from outside your organization. Your mentor—if they are a truly good one—won’t give you direct orders, nor tell you exactly what to do. Instead, they will give you advice based on their role of advisor.
A good mentor is an invaluable resource, especially if you’re still learning the ropes of your entrepreneurship. There are many benefits to having a business mentor, and today, we’ll discuss a few.
Personal Experience and Expert Advice
A smart businessperson learns from their mistakes. A wise businessperson avoids mistakes in the first place, by learning from mistakes others have made. Your business mentor has knowledge and experiences far beyond what you can read about in books. Your close relationship with your mentor allows you to gain wisdom beyond your own personal experiences. You also get the benefit of expert, objective advice from someone who has already lived and learned.
It’s easy to get caught in an echo chamber when you’re consulting with other businesspeople inside your organization. You all want the business to succeed, and you all want to believe that you’re doing everything right—even if the numbers, or customer feedback, say otherwise. Or, maybe your business isn’t doing so well, and you’re questioning every decision you make for your company.
It’s impossible to remain objective while you’re focused on your business from the inside. Your business mentor is there to give you an outside viewpoint, one you may not have considered. He can show you where your thinking needs to change—and why—or why your ideas aren’t coming to fruition. Using a mix of constructive criticism and positive feedback, your mentor can guide you toward the best choices to make, even when it isn’t blatantly obvious what to do.
Networking and Connections
While your business mentor was actively working to build their business, they were making industry connections on many levels. Now that you’re a part of your mentor’s network, you gain the benefit of access to these connections. Your mentor can open doors and introduce you to many people who have the potential play important roles in your business. As a bonus, your mentor can help you strengthen your relationships with these new connections while the relationships are still budding.
In America, only about one in three businesses last ten years or more. Facing a 66% failure rate head-on is a real risk when you’re the one running your own business. A recent study by Kabbage, Inc. of more than 200 small businesses in the US shows that “92 percent of small businesses agree mentors have a direct impact on growth and the survival of their business,” and that “89 percent of small business owners that don’t have a mentor wish they did.” Business owners report that having a strong business mentor makes a real difference during the crucial first years of operation. While you’re still learning how to set up your business for long-term success, you can rely on your mentor to help you get through the make-or-break times.
Establishing a relationship with a strong business mentor is essential for you to help your business become the best it can be. We have personally coached and mentored thousands of entrepreneurs around the globe, but don’t take it from us: Hear what our clients have to say for themselves. When it comes to helping your Private Label business achieve success, we have the experience to help you build the business of your dreams. If you’re ready to take the next step and have PLU become your business mentor, contact us for private coaching. We’ll take your hand and guide you every step of the way, while giving you access to our resources and over thirty years’ worth of our personal experience. Let us help you become the success we know you can be!