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Building a business, being self-employed or going it alone professionally can be challenging. From prioritising tasks and hitting deadlines to picking up new clients and negotiating fees, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. Sometimes some positive encouragement and a gentle nudge from someone who have been there before is what’s needed, which is why having a mentor can be such an invaluable resource.

97% of those with a mentor say they are valuable (Sage.com), with research showing that 70% of small businesses who receive mentoring survive for five years or more (FSB), which is double the rate compared with non-mentored entrepreneurs. Whether you’re self-employed, running a business or just looking to upskill, mentoring can help accelerate decision making, open up new networks and provide useful sector insights.

A mentoring relationship can be a hugely rewarding experience for all involved; that’s why here at EnterprisingYou we provide free access to mentors who are dedicated to supporting your self-employment journey. From one-on-one guidance to mentoring masterclasses, we take pride in connecting experienced and altruistic mentors with enthusiastic mentees, who can develop each other in business.

Here are our top reasons why support from a mentor can make all the difference to your self-employment journey…

A Source of Clarity

“Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction.” — John Crosby

A fresh pair of eyes can be helpful in many aspects of life, and business decisions are no different. Whether you’re a little unsure of how to achieve your goals or feel completely lost for direction, a mentor can use their own experience and expertise to help outline specific aims and steps to succeed. This sharing of knowledge from somebody with an unbiased, constructive opinion can be vital to providing a greater source of focus, which is exactly what EnterprisingYou mentee Kimberley Drain, from Nourish Northern Mamas, found: “Having a mentor really helped me to challenge my thinking in terms of how I may expand my customer base. Pam was great as a sounding board to explore my ideas and build my confidence - she helped me to see how I could approach things differently.”

Accountability and Encouragement

"A mentor is someone who sees more talent and ability within you, than you see in yourself, and helps bring it out of you.”- Bob Proctor

When we have to rely solely on self-discipline and determination to succeed, it can be easy to let the ball drop, which is why having someone in your corner can be really motivating. Knowing there’s an advocate for you and your business can provide a huge confidence boost, but it can also just be encouraging to talk with somebody who has been in your position and understands. This is rewarding for the mentor too, who can take pride in being part of their mentee’s journey. On the EnterprisingYou programme, mentees are asked what they would like from a mentor and are carefully matched accordingly, to make sure the relationship is as beneficial as possible.

Learning can boost your earnings

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” Plutarch

Mentoring is a fantastic opportunity for both mentor and mentee to develop new skills, which is no doubt why over 79% of Millennials see mentoring as crucial to their career success. In another study, an impressive 55% of businesses felt that mentoring had a positive impact on their profits. Mentors are a fountain of knowledge, who can provide you with a wealth of skills and tips. The best part is, learning works both ways! Mentors can also hone their leadership skills as the relationship develops. Lee Ali, Managing Director and mentor, said: “It’s always enjoyable and rewarding to facilitate growth and share my knowledge with motivated business owners.”

An opportunity to expand your network

“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” — Isaac Newton

Mentors come from all walks of life but often have one thing in common: they want to make a difference by helping other people in their quest for success. Having a mentor can open up a world of connections, which might just get your business in front of the right people. EnterprisingYou’s Mentoring Masterclasses and Mentoring Hubs are another great way to expand your network.

If you’re interested in becoming a mentee, EnterprisingYou can help!

We provide fully-funded support to the self-employed and gig economy workers across Greater Manchester, including free access to mentoring. If you have specific personal or professional goals, speak with your Business Coach to be connected with a mentor.

We are always keen to speak to people interested in mentoring too.

Whether you’re an experienced business professional, have personal and relevant insights to share, or you just want to help the business community, get in touch to expand your network and business coaching expertise.

Having a mentor can be a great support during successful and the challenging times.

Contact us on 0161 667 6900 or email to info@enterprising-you.co.uk to find out more.