Tag Archives: Mentoring

4 New Year’s Resolutions You Should Consider Making

Now that the Christmas rush is over the attention turns to 2016.

In consideration of the goals that you may be looking to set in 2016, l am pleased to suggest four New Year’s resolutions you should consider making.

1.Get More “Social” With Your Social Media.

People ConnectionsSocial Media is a game changer.  It allows us to connect instantly with anyone around the globe.  However, as great of a communication tool that social media in all its forms can be, it can also isolate us from the “person to person” communication so vital to creating the real and lasting connections that can truly help us get things done.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:

  • To make a phone call rather than send a text.
  • To use your mobile devices to create a short video to explain your point rather than to write a post.
  • To acutely meet your LinkedIn connections; discovering how you can be of assistance to them.

2. Never let “I don’t have enough time” be an excuse for not getting things done.

Man looking at the clockWhen the clock turns midnight on January 1st, we will all have the same 525 600 minutes to make our dreams, wishes, goals and accomplishments come true.  So the question is, why will some people get stuff done during those 15,493 hours 20 minutes and many others will not?  Yes, the answer between getting things done or not, often comes down to ability or money.  However, it should never come down to time.  We should be the master of our time instead of having time master us.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:  

  • To account for our time by using a planner to schedule our daily, weekly, monthly and yearly activities.
  • To be responsible for our time by vowing to make our meetings better. Use an agenda to make sure the most important items are covered while being committed to the revolutionary notion of starting and ending our meetings on time.
  • To take advantage of our time by looking for ways to be more efficient. With a dedication to making technology work of us instead of us working for technology. All the while, understanding that multitasking, despite how much technology is designed to give us that advantage, actually creates more inefficiencies.  It actually causes us to use more time than our “multitasking” efforts will achieve.

3. Be willing to mentor and be mentored.

MenatoringKnowledge is the key to becoming better at what we do and how we do it.  Knowledge is best obtained with experience guided by mentors.  A mentor is a person or friend who guides a less experienced person by building trust and modeling positive behaviors. An effective mentor understands that his or her role is to be dependable, engaged, authentic, and tuned into the needs of the mentee.  We need more effective mentoring in our lives.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:  

  • To freely share our knowledge and experiences with others.
  • To become a thought leader by writing blogs on LinkedIn and other social media.
  • To challenge ourselves with an active learning life highlighted by reading articles, books and whitepapers. Also, by attending lectures, seminars and webinars.

4. Set goals instead of making resolutions.

Research from the University of Scranton suggests Set Goals Hand Red Markerthat just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s resolutions

So why do so many people fail at these resolutions?  Well the answer is simple. Resolutions are merely wishes, however, setting goals make our wishes a reality.

Therefore, resolve with me this year to set goals that are:  

  • Clear and Simple. Instead of developing a large list of aspirational goals, create a set of small, yet, attainable goals. With the clarity these goals can bring, the accomplishments will come.
  • Set Tangible Goals. If you can’t measure it, you can’t achieve it.
  • Advertise Your Goals. Letting people know what you are up to is a powerful way to gain the support you will need to get things done. Announcing your goals is a great way to build accountability, especially, in the Social Media era.

Final Thoughts

The New Year is filled with hope, opportunity and promise. And despite the ups and downs that will come, I am confident that with vision, perseverance, and hard work we not only reach but exceed our God given potential.


Have a happy and productive New Year!!! 

8 Ways To Find A Mentor

Robert Williams

Robert Williams

At the start of my business career when I was filled with more promise than talent Dr. Bob Williams became my mentor.  He took me under his wing and helped me understand:

–        How to keep my cool in the heat of the office battle

–        How to ask the right question at the right time

–        How business really worked including the people I should befriend and avoid

Dr. Williams freely poured time, effort and priceless knowledge into me, I will be forever grateful for his efforts in turning me into a better-rounded professional.

Regardless if you are focused on growing your career or in job search or we need mentors.  People like Dr. Williams who can provide guidance, information and solve problems as we navigate the good the bad and the ugly of our career and lives.

Looking  For A Mentor?

Good question. But to be brutally honest, chances of finding a mentor like Dr. Williams are slim to none.   Why…I think the problem lies in the definition of mentorship. It’s far too narrow. Let me explain.

When most people use the term mentor, they mean a one-on-one coaching relationship with someone older and more experienced.  While you may be able to settle for an informal or ad hoc relationship instead of the traditional formal arrangement, the supply of mentors far exceeds the available supply.

Mentor – An Expanded View

So, what do you do if you are trying to find a mentor?

I suggest you expand your view of mentoring, to include any experience, resource, opportunity or person you can learn from.    Michael Hyatt, leadership expert and bestselling author of Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World Offers 8 ways we can find the advice, confidence and information that can come with mentoring in his post How to Find A Mentor.  I am pleased to present Michael’s thoughts:

1. Blogs and Podcasts

If you could wave a magic wand and be mentored by anyone, who would it be? John Maxwell, Seth Godin, Dave Ramsey or someone else? Chances are they have a blog or podcast and are already churning out a tons of content—for free. Are you taking advantage of it?

2. Books

There’s no greater value than a relevant, well-written book. For less than $20, you can get someone’s best thinking on a specific topic. Never before in history has so much knowledge been available to so many, for so little. And if you don’t have the money to buy a book, go to the library.

3. Courses

I’ve spent hundreds of hours with Tony Robbins, Brendon Burchard, David Allen, and numerous others. Not personally, of course, but by taking their courses. This is the next level up from reading a book. The instruction is more in-depth and, as a result, more likely to actually transform my behavior.

4. Conferences

When possible, I prefer live instruction. It provides an opportunity for total immersion, focused learning, and interaction with other students. It occasionally provides direct access to the instructor(s). I make it a priority to attend three to four conferences a year as a student.

5. Masterminds

I didn’t start hearing about these until a few years ago. Now they are all the rage. They are actually a very old idea. Benjamin Franklin, for example, had one. It’s a wonderful opportunity for peer mentoring. My friend Dan Miller has a great audio and PDF on how to create one.

6. Membership Sites

This can be a wonderful hybrid of input from specific mentors plus the input of fellow members. For many people this is the perfect combination. That’s what I do, for example, at Platform University. There’s a monthly fee attached, but it is nominal and enables us to bring high-quality content to our members.

7. Coaches

If you are willing to pay for a mentor, a coach is a great option. I employed one for more than a decade. While you may think you can’t afford one, I would challenge you to investigate it before dismissing it. If a coach helps you seize one opportunity, optimize your productivity, or avoid one fatal mistake, it will pay for itself many times over. I recommend Building Champions.

8. Mentor

Though a true mentor may be difficult to find, it’s not impossible. If you have one in mind, start by building the relationship—just like you would anyone else. Don’t lead with “Will you be my mentor?” (That’s like asking someone to marry you on the first date.) Instead, get to know them. Look

The Bottom Line: The Accountability of the Mentor  

In 1st Corinthians 4:17, Paul sends Timothy to mentor the Corinthian believers and to hold them accountable; for as Jesus said, “He who is faithful in little is faithful also in much” (Luke 16:10).  Dr. Williams was faithful in the little things, mentoring young professionals, tending to the fine points of the school system.  And he was faithful in the large thing as the Bibb County turned to him to lead the school system through its most challenging times.

On Friday, Dr. Robert Williams will be laid to rest.  He was in tune with his times while still ahead of his times. I like many are grateful that this “Timothy” was sent into my life to mentor me then and to keep me accountable long ago and even to this day.

Marben Bland is a Writer, Speaker and Strategist focused on working with emerging biotech and high tech companies. He writes the weekly How to be a LinkedIn Ninja blog, in addition to the Weekly Job Report and the Friday Commentary blog.  A popular speaker at trade shows and seminars Marben is available for strategic consulting engagements or speaking at your next event; give him a call today at 608.358.1309

Comment on this post at marben@marbenband.com .