Why Mentor Others?

Mentoring-wht1Recently, my wife and I drove through various Southeastern states to visit family and friends. While driving, I often had many moments to reflect upon what I do, why I do it, and what brought me to make and stick to that decision all these years. Throughout the drive, I always circled back to three things. First off, I’ve come across many people that have positively influenced my life. Secondly, I’ve always had a passion for helping others, and Third, I love to coach and teach. So, why do I choose to mentor others?

In my business, I often come across people from different generations, in various stages of their lives, or are in some form of transition. They all face changes, challenges, and decision points in their lives that affect their jobs, careers, and businesses. Whether these changes, challenges, or decisions are planned or not, the crossroads they face can be quite daunting. Often times, they seem stuck, have little or no direction, and they need help. Having been there many times myself in my life and career, I try to share my knowledge and experience with them, so that they can make the right decisions for themselves.

WebThree key points that I always try to stress in my mentoring sessions with them are: have a vision, think strategically, and continue to learn.

Early in my career, one of my mentors always tried to stress these three key points with me. He emphasized to know where you want to go, think out of the box, and continue to learn.

“Education is a foundation, not an end point. Never be afraid to diversify, grow, and explore different things.”

casentric-mentoring-quote2.ashxGreat advice and it works; however, it’s a two way street! Let me share a success story with you. Quite a few years ago, I mentored a young supervisor just starting out in her career. After a few sessions, what we discussed clicked, she got it, and ran with it. Over the years throughout her career, she has held various supervisory and managerial roles in a Fortune 500 company, where she had (as she puts it) the privilege of coaching, mentoring and developing many young professionals herself. Oftentimes, she reflected on the mentoring sessions we had and encouraged others to try new things, diversify, and explore other areas of business and interests. As she continued to grow in her career, she coached, taught and mentored students in a business partnership program affiliated with her local school district, and encouraged others to mentor others as well.

So, that’s why I do what I do. Just as my mentors taught and encouraged me, I continue to enjoy my passion to mentor others. Don’t be afraid to try new things, diversify and share your talents, and explore new areas of interest. What’s on your development plan for this year?

Advertisements

Wearing The Stripes From Zebra To Pin

Basketball has always been a passion of mine and has always been good to me. When I transitioned from being a point guard to a basketball referee over 30 years ago, never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the friendships, relationships, and opportunities that I would gain. But, more importantly, the lessons that I learned beyond the rule book, blowing the whistle, and making calls, especially at the collegiate level, were just incredible. What always intrigued me the most was how the most successful and elite coaches built quality, successful, and sustainable programs which always centered around a solid culture and good core values despite the many social, competitive, economic, and media pressures that they constantly faced . And, on top of that, dealing with the multiple attitudes, expectations, and transiency of today’s coaches and athletes was a major challenge in itself! So, I often wondered: “how do they do it.”

Through many years of observation, reading, and discussion, it became apparent to me that, beyond having a good culture, core values, and solid offensive and defensive schemes in place, the one key ingredient that was critical to their success was having a good succession plan in place. Huh? you may ask…It’s true. I found that they always tried to focus on five key principles that were “a must” to have quality coaches and players to sustain the ongoing success of their program:

– Know The Key Positions and Players
– Know The Required and Preferred Skills
– Know The Possible Successors
– Involve Key People
– Commit To The Development of Talent

During my reading, I found this article on succession planning in sports which, ironically, pretty much summarized and explained the same thing.

So, I began thinking, if I’m a CEO or management executive, how does this translate to the success of my business or organization? If you think about it, it’s not much different. You too need a good culture, core values, and a solid offensive and defensive scheme in place in the form of a solid strategic plan, processes, and procedures. But, just like any collegiate basketball coach, you also need good talent and people in both your management team as well as your skilled work force. You too will find it difficult to keep talented executives, managers, and skilled workers in your organization as well due to many social, competitive, economic, and other pressures. But, how do you mitigate those risks? Follow the five principles that most successful collegiate basket ball coaches use:

– Know The Key Positions and Players
– Know The Required and Preferred Skills
– Know The Possible Successors
– Involve Key People
– Commit To The Development of Talent

So, from my view wearing the stripes in either role, having a succession plan in place is best, my friends! It’s worth having in your strategic tool box!

Talent Shortage In The Energy Industry

Energy organizations face many financial, regulatory, capital infrastructure,and reliability challenges. An integral part of their planning strategy needs to focus on human capital that includes attracting and developing the right type of talent and skill sets.