Well said…No matter who you are, how great your deeds, there will always be critics and those who challenge what you stand for. There is no controlling what the critic says and does, only how you respond and your opinion of yourself. Often, that is a more powerful weapon than we even realize.
This is a good reminder from Seth Godin about what real mentorship is all about. Many organizations try to cram a formal mentoring program on their teams but by definition mentorship is much more, dare I say, an ‘organic’ process. You cannot force others, or yourself for that matter, into being a good mentor. It’s a choice you make when the time and place is right. Part of it comes from a true desire to pass on what you have learned, perhaps from someone who has mentored you. There is a sense of responsibility and tradition to it and typically there’s a gravity of sorts that pulls kindred personalities together. Occasionally the “square peg” and the “round hole” will come together because of circumstance or some catalyst but that is the exception not the rule. There is no system in the universe that force repelling poles to unite. Organizations can have structure and guidelines to a mentor program, encourage it’s growth but trying to force participation is a recipe for failure.
On the flip side, if you want mentorship, you must agree with yourself to be a willing student. If you are a “know-it-all” it’s unlikely that anyone of substance will want to mentor you. It requires you to be open to criticism, willing to listen and step out of your comfort zone to take action. This kind of relationship, like all others, is a two-way street.
If you keep your eyes, ears and mind open, you will always find people that you can learn from…Remember to share what you have learned. Teaching something to others is the best way to master it.
“It’s what you learn, after you know it all, that really counts.”
The Zen of mass mediocrity…
An excellent post by Seth Godin! So many express frustration by the masses that embrace mediocrity, to carry the extra weight of those not doing their part. But the “Yin and Yang” of it is that through that mass of mediocrity, we recognize what is excellence. One defines the other and therefore in order to recognize what is excellence, we must also define what is mediocre.
The truth is that life and business is much like the movie, The Matrix. Most people are not ready to be “unplugged”, they fear the real world of excellence and what is required.
Have you been unplugged?
Are you willing to pay the price daily for a path of excellence?
The secret is to begin in the mirror, the masses will sort themselves out. Like magnets, excellence attracts excellence.