Mentoring can be life changing; some of you may have, or be looking for, one of your own. Today, however, we’re talking about why you should be a mentor, now.
Inspired by Reach Out, a charity that offers young people the chance to mentor pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds, here are five reasons why you should consider being a mentor. Even though your career has not yet begun, you might be surprised at how much you can offer.
1. Learn to see things differently
It always important to broaden your horizons; your career may see you working with a wide range of people and it is important that you are able to relate.
Mentoring gives you the chance to engage with someone younger than you, who may see things very differently. In a changing world, it is essential to understand how those who have come after you think, and also how they view your own generation.
2. Stop thinking about yourself (to help yourself)
Sharing your experiences may help you understand them in a different light; a moment that barely made an impact on you may in fact provide crucial insight to another person.
Sometimes you need to get out of your own head to actually understand yourself better.
3. Challenge old behaviour
We all get into bad habits, whether professionally or personally. A different point of view can help you understand why you take a certain course of action, or why you think in a certain way.
As you pass on your advice and experience, you will have a better idea of how well you are living your own life.
4. Practice being a leader
Leadership is a valuable skill in any environment, and mentoring is a key part of it. The ability to help others learn and progress will be a key skill in your career, and you will also be able to build your communication skills.
Many businesses now have their own mentoring programmes, showing that they put real value on such relationships for the parties involved. Get ahead early and demonstrate to employers that you have what it takes to lead.
5. Change someone’s life
You may not think that you have much to offer at this stage of your career, but engaging with someone who has had an entirely different background can be immensely rewarding for both of you.
Many young people never get as far as university, but you can help change this. Give a new generation the encouragement and support that will help them make the most of their potential.
You can learn more about the Reach Out Mentor Programme here. It only takes one or two hours a week, and you could make a huge difference.