Finding the Right Mentor
something that can really get us productive is finding the right mentor for your business. And I always love this Mark Twain quote. It ain't what you know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure. That just ain't so. We know a lot of things that we think are true about our business, about running our small business. That just isn't true, and a mentor can really help us. We kind of get stuck in our business because how New year old business it truly is lonely at the top, right? You have to make all the decisions you think sometimes that if asking for help is really a sign of weakness, you don't want to look stupid, right? You think you've got to know everything and you think that you can hire the next magic person. They'll be, though the person writing in a white horse, and it just doesn't really work that way. So what you really need is you really need a trusted MAENNER when I go out and I serve a small business owners. They say that the single most important factor the su...
ccess of their business is finding the right mentor and I will tell you for myself. I have several of them, but one of mine is Revilla. Sanski Rivulets on C used to be the editor of Entrepreneur Magazine, and she's been my mentor for over the last 3 to years. And whenever I go a little bit sideways or don't really know where I should go, I reach out to Reba because she can see things from the outside in. You know that old expression, it's hard to tell the label on the bottle when you're on the inside. It's hard to read the label on the bottle when you're in the inside, it's the same thing with your business. The other thing is, if you truly have a trusted mentor, you can fire them, right? Even no matter how angry that already, really, that you really get. So let's talk about for a minute. Do any of you have mentors? And how did you find that mentor who is a mentor? You don't have a mentor? Yes, Gina, I don't just have one mentor, Koji of several several people, and not necessarily one person who has all the answers, but several people who I consider friends business colleagues as well as people who are in totally other businesses but that have been successful at what they've done. And so when I asked him about a particular question, even though it's not necessarily exactly my type of business, they have really great insight about how toe deal with particular situations. Excellent any bill to the mentor. So I had mentors, but I I guess I think it is certain point. The mental falls away like, you know, mental is come and go. But I did have one mentor that kept on asking me to do more architectural work, for which was very weird. But I've had other mentors who have been incredible, who I've just met socially, who become my man tells which has been invaluable. You know, there's a there's a lot of people yearn to get a mentor, but they have a hard time knowing where. And here's some suggestions. As as a Shane would say, You're going to see some real you know. I'm just noticing on your slide there. I actually, um, want down on the score and the SPDC I've found some very significant mentor is not necessarily in my particular industry the people who were able to give me resource is to other people had more connections that I could continue Teoh fall forward in my business scores is a great place. Association of retired executives partially sponsored by the PSP A that helps small business owners. That typically is no charge. Same things with the SPD sees the small business development centers. You can look at fellow owners, business professionals, your chamber of commerce Gonna have a lot. You will be very surprised if you just ask how many people will actually reach out toe want to help you and you just have to really do that. So what do you really what should really look for in a mentor? The biggest one obviously is. They have to be able to listen to you. If they're not a good listener, that doesn't work. They've got to be able to help you without judging you. Now, if you think you're being judged, you're never really gonna be able share things you don't Also, they don't want them. Teoh make you feel stupid because again, if you think you feel stupid, you're not going to share with them. This, I think, is very important. They've got to be able to keep secrets. And keeping a secret thes days, we all know is much more difficult. With everything that goes on with social media, they also have to be able to teach you the way you learn. Some of us learn through talking to one another. Some must learn through numbers some us learned through visuals. So the way that you want to learn that's the way you should really have a mentor. And the most important thing is you're gonna have mutual respect. It's not just that you respect them, but as a business person, they really respect you. The hardest part, I think, as Mark Twain said, is really to admit what you don't what you really don't know. So you can ask questions to some people and they'll tell you what you don't know if you have a good relationship. Sometimes it's good to go to past employees and say, Hey, what I do write what I do wrong. Same thing with business professionals. Has anybody here taking the Myers Briggs test? Sally, Right. That's gonna tell you what kind of person you are as well. Yes, meal go. Um I would love to have more mentors, but I often feel I won't also give back. I don't want to take too much of their time. What's the best way to develop that kind of relationship and how to get back to them? It's a good question. So what I would do is you would say, I'd really like to be my mentor. What should the structure of this be? Right? So how much time can it really take? And what can I do for you now when the better ways to do this. If you're worried about failing, have to get back if you pay them, you're giving them back money, so that's all you really need to do. Um, I really believe that if you can set up a relationship where you can pay a mentor, that's good, because you feel like you can take and just give the money really back in return. But it is a double edged sword. If you pay them, will they really say, Well, they just say what you want, right? And if you don't pay them, will they really be serious about helping you? So you really need to find a combination, and it really can work either way in paying. You got to find the person that is not afraid to be fired, that you're not a major source of their income. At the same time, if you don't pay, you have to make sure that the commitment is there to really help you. And do they expect anything else in return? I think it's excellent question, one last thing here. The most important idea in this whole sections presentation is you've got to be a good listener, and I think that as small business owners and entrepreneurs, and I know that I'm guilty of this is that I don't listen enough. But if we listen to what people are telling us around us, it doesn't mean that we always have to take that advice. But at least we should consider it and put it into our thought process. The last thing that really impacts. I believe our productivity is the smartphone at work. We discussed it a little bit yesterday. I love the smartphone, but I happen to think that it possibly could be the downfall off offices as we know it, because it gets me gets me concerned one of the issue is again. It's not the smartphones fault, right? It's not technologies fault. Don't blame the employees that they can access Facebook or LinkedIn or Twitter email on a smartphone that holds their device. We really need to blame ourselves, because in our office environments, most of us don't have any rules. Ah, so say with that right? Or we don't enforce the rules or we are afraid to enforce the rules. And so the problem with the smartphone is that it caused all these things. It caused a distraction, right? If we have a policy, we can save them from from temptation, that really is no. One right policy. It's just we need to know what it is consistently All right. So the first step is, if you work in an office environment, is there a business reason that people should be on their their smartphones, right? If it's no, then people should only really take them out in emergencies. If the answer is really yes, then we probably need to issue them a separate phone, right, and this is very important. Everybody needs to follow the same rules. I've been environments where Okay, well, certain people can use smartphones and purser. People can't give an example, were mentioned yesterday how I go into so many different retail environments that I walk into the store and the person is on their smartphone. Now there are no customers in the store, but when I walk up to them, I feel like I'm interrupting them. Or how can they really be focusing on what they're doing during that day? If their answers something on Facebook, all of a sudden, I gotta go back to whatever my retail situation is. I'd much prefer to do what a hardware store in Chicago does called Menards, and I pointed this out in my new book, How to Get Unstuck 25 Ways to Get Your Business Growing and End when the cashier registers in the people behind that the cashiers, when they have nothing to do, they don't kind of sit there and go something like this underneath the desk, right? You've all seen that right. It's kind of longhand underneath the desk. Would they do? Is they actually their cash writers here? If they have nobody to to see they come out in front of their cat, tries there and they stand there waiting to welcome you. Would you rather see someone like this as you approach the cash register? Or do you like to kind of see someone kind of like this? Right again? It's just important to have rules. The other really important thing is that every single camera sorry. Every camera has a phone attached to it. Every single smartphone. It seems that way, doesn't I got this great camera came with it, came with a phone every single smart phone has a camera associate with. So, ah, lot of secrets have been lost because people are taking pictures of intellectual property, right? And so you've got to really be careful there. The other thing is you also have to remember they're going to be photographs or perhaps even videos of every single thing that goes on inside your organization, right? We have to be very careful here, you know, at Creative Live, we can take pictures of of the studio, but we can't take pictures of a control room, right, because they're proprietary kinds of things that are really going on. So you may think that we're hurting someone's privacy. But again, if you set a rule. You tell him up front what's gonna happen and what's not gonna happen. It's important if you have to issue a separate phone. You should. This is very, very hard for small business owners because most cos right now have what's called B y o d this who knows what b I y ideas. Let's be a y o d Shane o What is it? Own device, Right? And what does that mean? You have your own phone, your own IPad, your own laptop, right? So you don't the company this issue one you bring your own. If there is a business need, I know that it costs some money, but you should issue the employees their your own device, right? It's expensive. And then when you put on that devices on Lee business applications, and then since it's your device, you have the legal right to monitor because the last thing that you really want to do is is have to monitor. Can't really monitor someone's personal phone, right? It just isn't right. But if I give you a phone and I only have business applications on it, I can monitor it. So let's talk further about how to do that. I really believe again, going back to productivity. We really have to leave our phones out of meetings. I see this all the time. I go into a meeting or you see, when you go into a restaurant, right, you see this instead taking guns and putting our guns out on the table, right? We're all taking our smartphones, right, And we're putting them out on the on the desk, right? And then people aren't meetings, and then they're kind of looking over right, and they're saying it buzzes. And then you do that. What kind of message? I guess you know, You know what kind of message? If I've got my phone on the desk, what kind? And I'm in a meeting talking to someone when I phone buzzes and look out for what kind of message of my saying, the person I'm meeting with that you don't care about what? You don't care that whatever is immediately happening on that phone is a lot more important. So the only way to do that is to leave that phone outside the meeting and I want to assure everybody here and everybody listening. If you leave your phone out of the meeting. You're not going to die, I promise. Right? Nothing catastrophic is gonna happen, and hopefully this is a stand up meeting. That's only gonna last for 15 minutes. But you have toe have that kind of habit. You don't want the next interruption. Really? Take precedent. So let's talk about how you actually go out there and implement this policy, right? You have to tell everybody up front. You have to give people fair warning. You guys determine what's right with a smartphone, what's not right with far smartphone, and then you implement it and I will tell you you will see productivity sore because again, and people are always checking their smartphones, every bus, better place. Also, think back to the Menards example. This will send a strong message to your customers that when a customer's in front of you or again, if you're on the phone with them and you're not also because, remember, you have a lot of people are on the phone talking to customers, and they're also checking their own smartphones. So how can they be doing two things really at one time? All right, so we come to the end of this section I wanted to all think about. And I'm gonna ask you in a minute. What's the one change you're going to make? And this includes our hosts. This is such an important part. What's the one change you're gonna make in order to try to improve your productivity so you can be productive? Not just busy. I know that Shane already has an answer. Um, probably the smartphone. Putting it away, keeping it in my purse. Not on my person all the time. It's very tempting to, and I can very easily make the excuse that will. If my kids need to get a hold of me, they're gonna call my cell phone, But I can't give them the store phone number. Right? So that if it really was an emergency, bacon called the store number and they could get ahold of me. Now, remember, Shannon, this is we have to do this all at once. Remember? I keep talking about striving for minimal achievement. Try it for 15 minutes, right one day, then try for minutes, then try it for a now. Right? Check in every hour Instead. You ever checking every five minutes is not a cold turkey kind of thing. You want to gradually get their. You know, one of the problems that we face is if you think about how health clubs make their money. When is most the health club sign ups in the United States, most people sign up for a membership for health clubs, and I know January, right. Well, December January 1st, right? And when do most people cancel their health club membership Ever worry first. So why is that, Karen? Because they got stuck in the New Year's resolution and the heat of the moment. This is the year I'm going to get healthy and they've got their long list. And then life happens. And by February 1st they're back into all the same old patterns again. So typically what happens is they life hat does happen. But they're so excited about being part of Jim. They go to the gym five days a week that first week right there, so happy and then they're a little bit sore than the next week. They go four times and then they're kind of get a little boards. They go three times and then they go two times and then they go one time and then they quit, Right? I remember when I was learning. This one is Farina. I was learning how to meditate. I was taking a meditation class and I said, You know, to my headmaster said, How long should I meditate? He says, Why don't you try one minute a day for a year? If that works out, you go to 90 seconds right? It wasn't like let's do five minutes 1/2 hour hour. Whatever it is, let's really try to make very, very slow progress. Let's getting burned out. Remember, the idea is that this is a long game and we don't want to burn out in the very, very beginning. All right, so I think that's good. So if you can set a goal of not keeping on your person for the first week for 15 minutes a day, I think that'd be a really good start. And maybe after a couple months ago to 16 minutes a day, right? So we know. What about for you? Just the separating out of tasks versus phone calls and emails and just focusing on tasks first? Like if I could, just if I could get to tasks a day done right. I could get 10 tasks a week. Done amazing. And guess what? You can get to task today. Done and the way they usually do. This is you focus on the tests, right? Videos to test done. You answer all the half to phone calls and then you go back to all the other task and you get something done. Great. If you don't get him done, that's okay, too. But at least your day's been productive. As it says exactly. I've got the article written. I've got my presentation ready. Carol, what about for you from Yogi Stream dot TV? I think for me, the phone one. But letting people know that I won't be as available as I have been in putting that down and perhaps using that time to find a mentor. That's great. So let's talk about that for a second before we get to meal Go. Where do you think that you can find the mentor? I have somebody in mind who is a very successful businesswoman that I'm going to approach first. I have very high regard for I'm not sure that Sally's available, but you can ask. And then my local chamber of commerce, I think, is a great place to start again. If you reach out, I think you'll be surprised. Miracle. What about you? From productivity standpoint, not multitasking. It has been great experience being here because I have asked my crime social and partner to take over for these two days. And I don't have my smartphone anywhere and really focusing. And eight, um, it reminds me that how we get so used to multitasking and just be conscious at the moment. I mean, this really is a discipline for the four of you to sit here without checking your smartphones, right like that. So I think we're well on our way. All right, Chris, what's one change you're gonna make? Yeah, I think I have a grasp on the technology. I think I'm okay with that. I not paying attention to my devices, but you talked about the negatives of to do to to do lists. I think I actually need more to do list and have more structure and priority in my things, because I'm I'm focusing on one thing at a time, but I think need to prioritize better because priority is really a key because you got to get the most important thing done first, right, Sally, what about for you? I think Well, first start, I need Teoh. Just switch this stuff off. But I think I'm inspired by you saying you've got the presentation. That talk. I have a talk. Siri's I'm giving next week and I keep putting it on the back burner thinking, Well, I can whip that up because it's what I do really well And I keep doing all this other stuff, but in fact, that talks not good. You know, it's not what I do really well, So I'm actually gonna put aside a chunk of time every day for that thing and hot and refine it and get my book written. And his John gents was saying yesterday's We've got to focus on not only the stuff that's do but the most high impact thing. The thing that I want to talk about before we go to our special guest is the only person here that said they actually had a mentor really? Was Tiana, you know? What do you think you could find a mentor? I actually have been meeting more and more people as I've been stepping more and more into production. So I've been collaborating and partnering with people, So people have different experiences. Um, and I find mentors in everybody, I think. Is there one person that your dream mentor that, you know, you can say their first name? Who would be your dream mentor? A dream mentor for me in But someone you know? I mean, not like you don't Mark Zuckerberg. Well, I was going to say Oprah, but exactly for me. Um, a dream mentor for me. I think about still pulling about eso think about that. About who You really can ask to be your mentor. Because again, as I mentioned from the outset, having the right mentor really is a single thing that really spells the difference between success and failure. So, Miyoko last less questioner Who could be your mentor? I think you could you listen to me, lady. Well, last night s o. I'd be glad to be made that commitment in front of everybody. Just like that