How do I find someone to mentor me in building my company?
I need assistance building my business. I am at the start-up process with alot of promise and I really need the help. Currently I am at the concept phase with multiple ideas but I need funding to move further ahead.
Hi David, Mentoring is a very personal thing and if you want someone with hands on skills that will take a good look at your business and you as a person and work with you and your business to achieve greatness you need to hire a mentor. To talk to me regarding this please private message me. I am happy to talk to you in person re this.
Firstly, congratulations on deciding to build up your business.
As far as where to find a mentor?
I would recommend joining forums, and utilizing sites such as Lined in, Twitter, Google +, and Facebook.
Also, If there is a national (or international) organisation for your profession, that would also be a great place to start looking for a mentor.
Wishing you every success-
Contact SCORE made up of former execs who mentor business people. Also, join a professional organization in your industry, if you haven't already done so.
I am a CEO Coach and expert in start-up and growing businesses. See www.CLevelEnterprises.com. I also wrote a book and CD-ROM tool set for CEOs as part of my CEO Boot Camp program. I am happy to offer a free call to diagnosis your needs and see if I would be a good person to help, or recommend others. As far as SCORE goes you always get what you pay for so don't expect much for free. They can provide some basics but calling them mentors is a stretch in my mind. A mentor is someone who understand you, your business and is there as a resource all the time to discuss issues and make recommendations. There are very few good coaches for business. Netowrks Like ActionCoach and others do not have very experienced people and do mainly "Accountability coaching" which means holding you to commitments.. You need someone who has "Been there, and done that" as a CEO or entreprenur. This is a different class of coaching.
I would only be appropriate if you want to build a real business - and by that I mean reach 15 or more employees. I do not take on sole practioners who are simply selling their time. Also see www.StartupPlanet.com (my products) and www.http://ceobizcoach.com a site on my coaching services.
Check out SBDC or Mercy Corp which can provide classes to help you, especially if you are in a place where you don't have a lot of income. Otherwise you might look into working with a coach. You might also go to networking events and find out if there are organizations where you can pitch you idea.
Two options for you to consider. A mentor would be someone who has experience in your specific industry and would be willing to take you on and show you essentially what they did or how they did it. The second option is for you to find an expert in growing businesses and have them coach you in the areas of marketing, sales, strategic planning & finance. If you choose to go in the direction of the second option check out this page for resources. www.actioncoach.com/juanortega
As others have given you good direction about where to find a mentor and where you can source funding I will be blunt as I feel there are deeper issues to address about where you are currently in your readiness for an entrepreneurial life, and which of your abilities need to be strengthened to build your business if you are ready.
The way you describe yourself tell me two things:
(a) Your mind is split in many directions which means you will struggle to reach your goal and may flip flop with so many options. If this is the case then the type of mentor you need will be one who can assist you to clarify the ideas. Do your current business ideas meet a market need?
(b) Are you a risk taker or just like the idea of making money from a safe distance? This could be more of a leadership and confidence issue as it sounds as though you are selling yourself as a resource to an investor and not actually working towards running your own business. If this is the case then it could be that you need a mentor to help you to define your goals that are of most importance.
There have been a lot of good comments on here so far. The only thing I would add is that you should try to identify people you already know who have been successful and reach out to them.
Also you may start networking and ask people to refer you to others that have been successful.
Once you have found a few people who have achieved the results in business that you want to emulate; get to know them, ask for advice and build a relationship.
Hmm, money or mentor...which comes first? All depends how much you are personally going to invest.
There are lot's of ideas followed by no money. Your best investors desire the founder to have skin in the game. Once you have that as well as the ability and desire to compensate a mentor you will then need a really unique original idea or concept that will greatly improve an existing one.
You have received Great advice thus far...Keep Pushing Forward Toward Your Goals. If you need a fellow Peer to bounce things off of, please connect with me.
There are a slew of federal agencies that offer funding of small businesses. An investor should be also aware of the road to success in your business area.
Several have already provided helpful suggestions for resources. Another to consider is the recently launched crowdfunding company: Volpit. Each startup goes through a comprehensive business plan vetting process so that potential investors will have a clear and concise view of the opportunity. This makes the process of equity crowdfunding as easy and hassle-free as possible for potential investors. Volpit just launched their investment platform a little over a month ago. (see recent Forbes story: http://www.forbes.com/sites/freddiedawson/2014/04/29/equity-crowd-funding-caveat-emptor-a-guide-for-investors/). While UK based, this company could potentially help with your thinking, planning, etc.
As others have said, SCORE is a great resource and it's free.
I too am a SCORE mentor, and I will always provide one bit of advice: If your assigned mentor isn't a good experience (personality clash, etc.), then ask for a new mentor. We keep notes in your file, so transferring to another mentor is no problem. After all, it's our job to make sure that you get the help *you* need.
Wishing you all the best!
This is a typical situation. Have six different further educations means Masters;
in IT Science / Project Management / General Management / Marketing / Personal Coaching / Communication.Pleasego on my LinkeId or XING account to get all relevant infos out there.
I guess this would be a combination of three models of support
1) Mentoring to show you how to proceed (Milestones / Steps)
--> classical Project Management with Quality Management and Risk Mgm
2) Personal Coaching to guide you through your own thoughts with your
3) Advice you how build up this Business Plan / Business Case /
Marketing Strategy and CREDO of your own HEART
myFavorit film is Jerry Macguirre / a football Coach-Agent with Tom Cruise
as preparation see this film, cause I got the impression that your are this man looking/searching for the GUAN, the HEART is inside you!!!
Call me, I will take enough time for your START-up Project
There must be someone that you have met along the way in your life so far that impressed you as an astute business person. What about family members and family acquaintances -- anyone there? Alumni?
I would need to know what type of business. There are some excellent groups to join that will help you get started. First find your professional associations that relate to your business. Interview others who have developed a similar business and learn what they did in the areas of strategic planning and marketing. Google funding for start-ups. I know there are a lot of groups that invest in start-ups.
Ask for a session with one or more accountants who understand small business, then hire one. Also, contact your local Score chapter, and go visit your local or area Chamber.
It seems the pro's have spoken.. you see many people are suggesting that you check out SCORE. There are over 11,600 volunteers across the country waiting to help be your "tour guide" they will stand with you through thick and thin for the "Life of your Business". Check them out.. www.score.org/chapters-map and enter your zip code to find the closest office to you.
Good luck with your endeavor
Certified SCORE Mentor
David - first, well done pal. Sounds like you've made a commitment to yourself to sail your boat and live life on your terms.
When I started my business coaching practice I reached out to other successful coaches and entrepreneurs. I got a lot of advice from a lot of coaches but in the end it was ME that had to a) make a decision and b) implement and execute.
Who is already doing what you want to do? Are they someone you respect? Start with them.
Who is someone you admire and respect in business - any business. Speak with them.
Check out an online forum called Clarity.fm www.clarity.fm It's similar to MosaicHUB but you can actually hire experts by the minute... and before you hire them you can see if anyone else has done the same and read their reviews.
Your success will be determined by a number of things - too many to write out... however here are three key indicators... Where you are in the next 1-3 years will be directly related to a) what you read, b) who you listen to, and c) who you associate with.
Spend ZERO time with people who don't support you and your dreams.
Figure out the key relevant data to look at and measure month after month. Sales. Conversions from leads to customers. Client retention. Referrals given. Referrals receive... etc etc... it's your business, you should know what your relevant numbers are.
Back to the question at hand... look for someone that you respect that won't gloss over the tough stuff. Yes, you need a hug now and then... but you also need someone who will be honest with you and say "STOP - why are you doing that?"
Good luck. It's a bumpy ride but the higher you go the better it gets... and it will be worth it.
Have you looked at SCORE? SCORE has a wealth of resources available to entrepreneurs as well as mentoring. Their website is http://www.score.org
I would also like to recommend MaRS. Their website is http://www.marsdd.com. They are a Canadian organization but most of their resources are applicable to the US, if not globally, as well. Check out their Entrepreneur's Toolkit, specifically Entrepreneurship 101 which has around 12 hours of video lectures for entrepreneurs. There is an entire section dedicated to finance, specifically bootstrapping and funding via VC.
Best of luck on your new venture!