Professional Business Mentoring
As a professional business mentor, the most valuable resource I have to offer is my business experiences (successes and failures):
- When I started my 1st Business
- How I laid the foundations for Company Growth
- What enabled business growth of 70% YOY for 10 Years
- Factors that forced the consolidation of a thriving business
- When I confronted my workforce of over 300 people with ‘Bad News’.
Utilising an Alternative Perspective
My career journey is different because:-
- the location [geographically remote and isolated] from where I started my business,
- the type of startup business I created [the first privately owned and internationally certified multi-disciplined contracting business based from regional Australia],
- the change I made between industries to survive [covering an operational area 3,000km’s Long and 1,500km’s Wide], and
- because of the turbulent growth trajectory I created through my first 15 years of business [$65k Start-up to $30+mil Company, <70%YOY growth for 10 years].
- I have watched a great business be destroyed [Project Escalation of over 400% and 18 months of Litigation that followed].
Business is my passion, I enjoy watching people succeed!
The most enjoyable perspective that I have these days is fostering entrepreneurial businesses and aiding in their ultimate success. I enjoy nothing more than watching people create their own destiny and realise their dreams.
I have a different perspective, and, this is where innovative business ideas begin….
Mentoring for Change
The most common problem that I see in a normal business is:
- Money is the driver,
- when it should be success!
- Micromanaging staff,
- when people should be empowered to manage themselves!
- Working in the ‘here and now’,
- when the focus should be achieving future objectives!
- Forcing mistakes,
- when continual improvements aren’t implemented!
- Staying the same,
- when innovation is leaving you behind!
The opportunity for people to improve their business is readily available; when people are willing to accept alternative solutions and allow an external opinion.
There is no greater business advice other than ‘learning from people who have already done it’, learning from other peoples mistakes. How they have gone on implementing solutions in order to succeed.
‘Mentoring for Change’ is a unique skill, and it helps people bridge the gap between surviving and thriving….
Mentoring for the Future
You should NEVER be so proud that you aren’t willing to consult another person’s advice. I made this mistake throughout my career, and it is probably my only regret when I consider the time I would have saved if I had of just been serious enough to source an outside opinion.
A professional business mentor will:
- uncover the biggest issues the business is facing and provide an opinion based on their own experience,
- be focussed on techniques that create opportunities,
- empower people to achieve greater success,
- initiate a dialogue that stimulates a mentee.
A professional business mentor is not just a person with ‘real life’ experiences, they have a ‘body of knowledge’ that is proven and established. Their credibility is backed by their achievements in the face of adversity….
“….they don’t care about the past as much as they are driven to create a successful future.”
Being able to ‘scale up’ is a technique that only a few people ever succeed at, mentoring for the future is all about creating a growth trajectory based on opportunities….
When people begin their business journey, they have usually mixed opinions on what ‘success’ will look like…. but they almost always become affected by the following 2 rules:
- People usually underestimate just how much effort a business takes to become viable; and,
- When people become financially committed they are overwhelmed with the potential burden that they have created for themselves.
In these circumstances people are so incapacitated that they forget about ‘working on their business’ and struggle to see opportunities because they are engrossed from ‘working in it’.
People get so tied up with the hours, time, cost and problems that they are too tired to do anything else…. Unless something changes, people will give up.
As a professional business mentor, my job is to identify shortfalls, inefficiencies, opportunities and areas for improved control. The core focus needs to be created.
I must use my own experience and proven ability to engage with the business owner/s (mentees). It means being professional and formal whilst being open and honest.
The greatest achievement for any business is self accomplishment.
A professional mentor will not tell people what to do from ‘day to day’ in the mentees business; but they will empower people to do what is needed for themselves.
The first step is usually creating focus areas for improvement and managing key business controls with a clinical amount of detail. Beginning with carrying out risk mitigation surveys and concentrate on building a formal ‘targets and objectives calendar’ for the business to concentrate its attention.
If you’re having trouble with getting your focus areas identified it may pay to start with the basics….
Once the business understands what their risks are, and, they know what their fundamental business is about; they need to begin making a choice for sustainability:
“Sustainability means having the business operate in a manner that can overcome business adversity (financial, industrial, legislative, technological or operational); it understands its risks, identifies its opportunities and assesses a controlled and measured approach with the ability to control (to the best of its ability) decisions so that the business has an improved level of survival if something were to go wrong.”
A sustainable business is perfectly placed to begin mapping a business growth trajectory….
Mentoring for Growth
- People who aren’t in business think that business is easy…. it’s not!
- Start-ups want to be millionaires overnight….. they won’t be!
- People always want to grow a successful business…. you can if you start!
To grow a successful business ‘a business must be sustainable before it should actively pursue growth’.
Business growth and sustainability is not a matter of the chicken or the egg. It’s about risk management, complacency and experience for making the right decision ‘the first time!’.
While people often shoot for the stars and hope like hell nothing goes wrong…. and it will! The likelihood of success is much greater when a business is managed sustainably.
“The likelihood of success is much greater when a business is managed sustainably”
For this reason, we make sure every mentoring endeavor is taken to ensure a sustainable approach and understanding is combined with the ‘growth mapping’ principles.
Mentoring for growth requires a higher level of commitment then what most businesses are accustomed to:
- It requires strict and prudent attention to detail.
- It requires a resolute and definitive focus from the business owner/s and managers.
- It means that it is driven from the top.
- It means everybody is accepting of change and committed to overall success.
- It means that owners/management are fully accountable.
Growth mapping is about finding new strategies, opportunities, skills and options that accelerate business trajectories. They map what is possible and customize what needs to be done at every stage in order to achieve it.
Only experienced mentors with a proven track record are able to explain the process and the pitfalls that they experienced along the way.
That sort of knowledge and expertise are what mentees require to drastically improved their chances of success over time….
There is ‘Good Advice’ and then there is ‘Advice’
- ‘Advice’ comes from trained people who think they know what they are doing,
- ‘Good Advice’ comes from people that have already done it!
I hope the insight I have explained here has helped you get a handle on why it is important to consult a Professional Business Mentor. You don’t have to do it alone!
Written by Geoff Pike, Entrepreneur, Speaker & Business Mentor
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Geoff founded a sole trader plumbing business in a remotely located and vastly underpopulated location in outback Australia. Starting business with only enough money to pay 4 weeks wages, Geoff persisted by growing the business into a multi-disciplined trade services company. Over a period of 12 years, the company Geoff established grew to employ a workforce of over 300 personnel covering an area almost half the size of Europe, receiving international award recognition with an annual revenue of over $30mil. Geoff knows what it takes to overcome adversity.