Dr. Anne Eiting Klamar (Anne) speaks passionately about mentoring. As both a mentor and a mentee over several years, she understands that having a mentor is a valuable resource. Anne believes a good mentor will help coach you, not judge you, and encourage you to think a little differently.
Anne pointed out that mentors will likely change throughout one’s life. Her mentors of twenty years ago are not the same ones she has today, but they all helped shape her thought leadership… helped her think about how she would approach a particular situation and assisted in her development.
Some larger companies offer internal mentoring programs, but not everyone may feel they have the luxury of being totally open and honest with someone from their own company. I asked Anne how one should choose a mentor and where to look for one. Should you try to choose someone from the same company in which you work or an external person? Anne encourages others to look for a mentor in several areas and to choose different types of mentors for different goals. For business purposes, she suggests considering a mentor who is on a board of directors. For health and wellness, you may want to choose a physical fitness mentor. And, you may even wish to choose a mentor for spiritual guidance. When choosing a mentor, you should think about each relationship. Ask yourself – what can I gain from it… and what can I bring to the relationship?
When choosing a mentor, Anne believes the most important factor is to choose a person that you respect… and respect their values. Secondly, think about yourself and how you relate to others. Anne stated that she is sensitive by nature, and appreciates someone who makes her want to respond positively… someone who will motivate her.
I asked Anne what she would say to others who do a great deal of networking, but who had not yet reached out to someone as a mentor. She encourages these people to take it a step further, to step out in courage… lean into a little discomfort. Also, think about what you can bring to the relationship. As a mentee, you have to take that first step.
Anne’s passion about the importance of mentoring is pure. She made me think differently about mentoring – think about how a mentor could be beneficial for my own career, think more about what I can bring to the relationship and also about having different types of mentors, not just one.
I hope you will attend the webinar this week to hear more from Anne about her own mentoring experiences, and what role it has played in her career to make her the executive and leader she is today.
About the Author:
Susan is the Public Relations Manager for Midmark Corporation, a leading healthcare equipment manufacturer and service/solutions provider for the medical, dental and animal health markets. She is responsible for PR planning and media relations, as well as Midmark's overall social media strategy and policy. In addition, she is currently President-Elect for the Public Relations Society of America - Dayton Chapter.