Stuck in Career Limbo? Learn 6 Tips on How to Find a Mentor Who’ll Help Skyrocket Your Success

8 minutes read -
Vishen, the founder of Mindvalley, on stage as a mentor
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Summary: Want faster career growth? Mindvalley thought leaders share how to find a mentor and accelerate your success—even if you’re a total newbie.

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Remember that scene in Dead Poets Society where the unconventional Mr. Keating ignites a spark of passion, urging them to “seize the day”? 

He empowers Neil Perry to confront his fear and pursue his dream. He builds Todd Anderson’s confidence. And he pushes Knox Overstreet to explore a new kind of self-expression. 

That is the magic of a mentor.

But wisdom and insights are one thing; how to find a mentor—a Mr. Keating to your Neil Perry/Todd Anderson/Knox Overstreet—is another.

The truth of the matter is, the essence of your growth lies not in solitary reflection. It lies in the dynamic exchange of ideas with those who’ve navigated similar paths.

Just ask the movers and shakers at Mindvalley—like Vishen, Keith Ferrazzi, and Verne Harnish—who emphasize how monumental of an impact a mentor can have in life. Their experiences underline a truth many of us often overlook: the right guidance is a powerful catalyst for change.

What Is a Mentor?

In essence, a mentor is someone who offers their knowledge, expertise, and advice to help guide another individual’s personal and professional development. This relationship is built on trust, respect, and a mutual commitment to growth.

In today’s competitive world, having a trusted advisor can be the difference between making it and breaking it. That’s why a staggering 75% of executives, according to a study by the American Society of Training and Development, credit their success to mentoring.

One of the most rewarding experiences I’ve come to know is having [my] personal values and beliefs challenged,” explains Vishen, the founder of Mindvalley. “It’s not always a comfortable experience, but that’s not the point. We’re not here to live in comfort. We’re here to grow. And we can’t grow unless we challenge ourselves.”

History is replete with examples of influential mentor-mentee relationships. Think Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams, Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs, Vishen and Dr. Srikumar Rao—you get the picture—a legacy passed on, a torch held aloft, illuminating the path for the next generation.

Vishen and Keith Ferrazzi
Vishen, founder of Mindvalley, with Keith Ferrazzi, trainer of Mindvalley’s Mastering Authentic Networking Quest

Why Is It Important to Have a Mentor?

In your journey of personal growth as well as your professional one, having someone who has walked the path before can be invaluable. They provide a unique blend of support, insight, and accountability.

Personally, they provide a safe space to help you reflect on your goals, values, and motivations. They can also offer encouragement and guidance during difficult times, provide a sense of belonging and community, and contribute to your overall well-being.

Professionally, a mentor can help you navigate career challenges, provide feedback to hone your skills and expertise, and open doors to invaluable networks. They’re so beneficial, in fact, that one study found that “employees with mentors report higher levels of job satisfaction, organizational commitment, compensation, and promotions.”

As you benefit from a mentor’s guidance, you can become a mentor yourself in the future. In doing so, you contribute to a legacy of knowledge and support within your field or community.

How to Find a Good Mentor In 3 Steps

Short of turning to personal development books, finding your own Mr. Keating can be quite a feat. But it’s not impossible.

Let’s explore how to find a mentor for adults:

1. Define your goals

Before your grand entrance into the “carpe diem” society of mentorship, take a moment to reflect on your own personal play. This is where, as Vishen often suggests, the three most important questions (also known as the 3 MIQs) come in handy.

It’s a practice where you pinpoint your end goals—your big dreams, the things you ultimately want to achieve in life. Essentially, you answer—what else—three questions:

  1. What do you want to experience in life?
  2. How do you want to grow and develop yourself?
  3. How do you want to contribute to the world?

Remember, the more specific your goals, the easier it will be to identify a mentor who can truly guide you toward achieving them.

Learn more: The Problem With Goal Setting and What You Can Do Instead: The 3 Most Important Questions

2. Join communities and events

Today’s most valuable currency is social capital, defined as the information, expertise, trust, and total value that exist in the relationships you have and social networks to which you belong,” says Keith Ferrazzi, a leader in professional relationship development and trainer of Mindvalley’s Mastering Authentic Networking Quest. 

That’s why being a part of a community like that at Mindvalley is incredibly important. These events bring together people from various backgrounds with common interests.

It’s not only a way to network but also an opportunity to be proactive. You can participate in discussions, ask questions, introduce yourself…and chances are, you might just find someone willing to mentor you.

The more you participate, the more opportunities are going to unlock for you. — @Vishen

3. Make that outreach

When you’re looking for your own Mr. Keating, the most effective way to land one is to simply reach out to them.

But it’s more than just sending a cold email. It’s about crafting a strategic message that sparks genuine interest and convinces them to invest in your growth. 

Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Personalize your communication with each mentor. Mention specific aspects of their work that inspire you and clearly articulate why you believe they would be the perfect mentor for you.
  • Choose the right medium. Whether it’s a professional email, a LinkedIn message, or a phone call, choose a medium that is appropriate for the level of familiarity you have with the person.
  • Be clear about what you are seeking. Express your desire for mentorship and specify what you hope to learn or achieve through this relationship. 
  • Offer value. While you’re seeking guidance, it’s also essential to think about what you can offer in return—your unique perspective, skills, or willingness to assist in a project. Offering value creates a mutually beneficial relationship.
  • Follow up respectfully. If you don’t receive a response initially, it’s acceptable to send a polite follow-up after a reasonable period. Persistence shows your commitment, but always maintain respect for their time and boundaries.

Remember, the goal of the initial outreach is to start a conversation. Your approach should infuse both professionalism and a personal touch, showing that you are both respectful and earnest.

As Keith advises, “Be sincere—the surest way to become special in other’s eyes is to make them feel special.”

3 Ways to Find a Business Mentor

You can absolutely use the same steps to find a business mentor. But there are also additional approaches, focusing on your professional aspirations and industry-specific challenges.

Here’s how you can navigate this process:

1. Seek them in your network

Your existing network is a treasure trove of potential mentors. These are individuals who already know you to some extent and might be willing to offer guidance. So before you hit up mentorship programs, consider tapping into your Rolodex. 

Start by making a list of people in your network who inspire you or whom you admire for their professional accomplishments. These could be career coaches, a wise professor from your college days, seasoned colleagues, or the aunt who conquered the business world. 

Then, consider reaching out to them for an informal chat or coffee. The key here is to build a connection and express your admiration for their work before directly asking for mentorship.

Learn more: 3 Tips to Unlock the Power of Genuine Networking

2. Connect with influential people

Connect with influential people in your field, suggests Verne Harnish, the founder of Entrepreneurs’ Organization and trainer of Mindvalley’s Scale Your Business to $1 Million Quest. This approach is a strategic way to broaden your mentorship possibilities.

Start by identifying key influencers and leaders who resonate with your goals and aspirations. For example, if you’re looking at how to find a spiritual mentor, make a list of the experts in the field, like Michael Bernard Beckwith, Jeffrey Allen, Agapi Stassinopolous, and so on.

Once you’ve got a list, actively engage with them. If you’re looking at how to find a business mentor online, interact with their social media posts. Or they may have a book out or a self-improvement podcast—you could send a message expressing your admiration for their work. 

When you’re ready, reach out directly; it can be a powerful tool in establishing a connection.

3. Attend professional events

Conferences, workshops, and networking—these are all professional working events to connect with potential mentors who share your enthusiasm and professional interests.

Connecting is one of the most important business—and life—skill sets you’ll ever learn,” says Keith. “Why? Because, flat out, people do business with people they know and like.”

So make the most of these professional events:

  • Research the event and its attendees. If there are specific individuals you hope to connect with, learn about their interests and work.
  • Focus on building genuine relationships rather than just handing out business cards.
  • Follow up with the contacts you’ve made. A simple message expressing your appreciation for the conversation and your interest in keeping in touch can pave the way for future interactions.
  • Volunteering or speaking at events can increase your visibility and make it more likely for potential mentors to notice and approach you.
  • Use social media platforms to connect with event attendees before and after the event.

The main goal here is authentic connections. It’ll help you identify and attract mentors who can contribute to accelerating your career.

Verne Harnish, the founder of Entrepreneurs’ Organization and trainer of Mindvalley’s Scale Your Business to $1 Million Quest
Verne Harnish, trainer of Mindvalley’s Scale Your Business to $1 Million Quest

How to Get the Most Out of Your Mentorship

Once you’ve found your mentor, the real magic begins. And to truly reap the benefits, you need to be an active participant, not just a passive recipient.

  • Set clear expectations and goals, both for yourself and your mentor.
  • Prepare thoughtful questions, not just generic inquiries, and listen actively, absorbing their wisdom like a sponge.
  • Be open to feedback, even the kind that stings, for it’s in those moments of discomfort that real growth blossoms.
  • Embrace challenges, for your mentor isn’t there to coddle you but to push you beyond your comfort zone.
  • Consistency is key—don’t be the flakey apprentice who leaves the master hanging.
  • Regular communication and follow-up demonstrate your commitment and strengthen the bond.
  • Express your appreciation for their time, guidance, and unwavering belief in you.

The best mentors are not just guides but catalysts, empowering you to see your own capabilities. And with the right one by your side, you can discover layers of talent and potential you never knew existed.

Seed Your Extraordinary, Seek a Mentor

Finding a mentor is, of course, about unlocking doors and accelerating your climb to success. But it’s also about embarking on a transformative journey of self-discovery. Just like Neil Perry, Todd Anderson, Knox Overstreet, and all the boys of Dead Poets Society

Are you ready to take the first step on your path to greatness? Mindvalley’s free quest previews offer a taste of Vishen’s transformative questions, Keith Ferrazzi’s networking magic, and Verne Harnish’s $1 million blueprint.

Unlock these free lessons, start building your extraordinary now, and discover the power of Mindvalley as your Mr. Keeting.

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Tatiana Azman

Tatiana Azman

Tatiana Azman is an SEO content editor for Mindvalley and a certified life coach. With a background in spa and wellness as well as having gone through a cancer experience, she's constantly on the lookout for natural, effective ways that help with one's overall well-being.
Written by

Tatiana Azman

Tatiana Azman is an SEO content editor for Mindvalley and a certified life coach. With a background in spa and wellness as well as having gone through a cancer experience, she's constantly on the lookout for natural, effective ways that help with one's overall well-being.
Keith Ferrazzi
Expertise by

Keith Ferrazzi is the trainer of Mindvalley’s Mastering Authentic Networking and Ultimate Leadership quests. He is also the #1 New York Times best-selling author of Who’s Got Your Back and Never Eat Alone. He founded Ferrazzi Greenlight, committed to researching the changes needed to human capital that are critical to achieving breakthrough growth and innovation.

Verne Harnish
Expertise by

Verne Harnish is the trainer of Mindvalley’s Scale Your Business to $1 Million Quest. He’s also the founder of the world-renowned Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), with over 14,000 members worldwide. For 15 years, he chaired EO’s premiere CEO program, the “Birthing of Giants,” held at MIT—a program in which he still teaches today.

An author of the bestsellers Mastering the Rockefeller Habits, The Greatest Business Decisions of All Times, and Scaling Up, he chairs the annual ScaleUp Summits and serves on several boards, including vice chair of The Riordan Clinic, co-founder and chair of Geoversity, and board member of the social venture Million Dollar Women.

Vishen, founder and CEO of Mindvalley
Expertise by

Vishen is an award-winning entrepreneur, speaker, New York Times best-selling author, and founder and CEO of Mindvalley: a global education movement with millions of students worldwide.

He is the creator of Mindvalley Quests, A-Fest, Mindvalley University, and various other platforms to help shape lives in the field of personal transformation. He has led Mindvalley to enter and train Fortune 500 companies, governments, the UN, and millions of people around the world.

Vishen’s work in personal growth also extends to the public sector, as a speaker and activist working to evolve the core systems that influence our lives—including education, work culture, politics, and well-being.

How we reviewed this article:
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Mindvalley is committed to providing reliable and trustworthy content. We rely heavily on evidence-based sources, including peer-reviewed studies and insights from recognized experts in various personal growth fields. Our goal is to keep the information we share both current and factual. To learn more about our dedication to reliable reporting, you can read our detailed editorial standards.

Fact-Checking: Our Process

Mindvalley is committed to providing reliable and trustworthy content. 

We rely heavily on evidence-based sources, including peer-reviewed studies and insights from recognized experts in various personal growth fields. Our goal is to keep the information we share both current and factual. 

The Mindvalley fact-checking guidelines are based on:

To learn more about our dedication to reliable reporting, you can read our detailed editorial standards.