May 1, 2015
My friend Jaclyn Johnson who I admire started Create + Cultivate conference that gathers the next generation of curious creatives, entrepreneurs, and business leaders to enlighten, entertain, and inspire across multiple categories. She asked me to come on board to help set design the event but to also be a mentor and host 6 sessions. I was overjoyed and so instead of hashing it out I thought I would break down my top 10 Benefits of having a mentor and mentee relationship.
The biggest benefit of having a business mentor is having someone you can ask questions and get advice. Talking to someone whith experience who is not going to charge you for their time is invaluable. I often tell my mentees had I had someone in place when I started my first business in 2004 I would have been retired by now. A mentor can help you sort out which advice you should follow while advising you on more complicated business matters that your friends or family would not know how to solve.
Business mentors can help you look at problems and situations from perspectives that you would not have thought of on your own. For example, as a new business owner, you may have trouble looking at your business through the eyes of a customer, potential investor or client.
Mentors are not like advisers and consultants, who care only about the business venture. Instead, business mentors help you develop your business skills. I find that communication between employees and staff is one of the hardest aspects for a small business owner. If you have been to my seminars you know I learned this the hard way!
Owning a business can be stressful and frustrating. As a business owner you’ll often need to vent with someone you trust. Business owners cannot vent to their partners, employees or customers without causing drama in the structure of the business. However, you can and should vent to a mentor and you can start the process of working with the mentor to solve the cause of your frustration.
Business mentors can put you in touch with contacts who can help you make your business more successful. As you all know I am the most open person with my contacts and connections. The more networking you do, the more people you meet. And the more people you meet, the greater the odds are that you will have someone in your Rolodex who can help you solve business problems, build up your client list, and ultimately create a network and COMMUNITY.
Methods and Strategies
In addition to simply giving advice and helping improve your personal business skills, mentors can prepare you with a library of methods and strategies. I can only tell you, from experience, how important it is to create a positive environment in your work environment as people like working for a happy and loving boss.
Although some mentor-mentee relationships are short-lived, if you hit it off with your mentor, you can foster a long-lasting relationship through which you and your mentor can continue to collaborate for the rest of your career. This will give you the consistency and resources you need to maintain a successful business. I often check in with each of my mentees once every 6 weeks. Sometimes it is only through text message but I like to remind them that I am always available to talk and or make introductions.
Knowing that you have a credible mentor to turn to can give you confidence when facing difficult business situations. I so wish I had someone like this when I was starting my business and as I have grown the business I have learned that sometimes mentors come in all different forms. I now have mentors who I consider to be among my community and network of people I can call and ask advice from. Mentor to mentee relationship does not have an age limit.
Starting a business is difficult, and many business owners face challenges early in the process. However, many business owners go through the same types of struggles. Hearing first-hand from your mentor about her experiences will help you realize that the struggles you are going through now will prepare you to be a better businessperson in the future.
Benefits for Mentors
Mentees are not the only people who benefit from business mentoring. I find it is an experience of benefits thanks to collaborative learning. By helping others improve their business skills, business mentors may improve their own skills. So many of my mentees have inspired me with new ideas, meet new contacts and learn new business strategies from them. The relationship should be reciprocal and balanced.
April 27, 2015
There’s a new breed of entrepreneur that needs some attention. They may not need venture backing, or be the next ‘thing’ in silicon valley. But they are lucrative, smart and small businesses – and they’re growing fast.
When each of us launched our businesses, there was no classroom to prepare us for what lay ahead. While it’s true that entrepreneurship will always throw the unexpected your way, there are some fundamental lessons that would have helped fast-track our trajectories. This shared experience has driven us to create a practical accelerator for creative entrepreneurs to help them on their way.
More and more, people are tuning in to their creative potential and are looking for a way to make their passions become their business. But making he leap is hard. And terrifying. Our program is here to educate, connect and build the confidence needed to take the plunge.
We’ve seen education change, and tech incubators crop up all across the country, yet we saw nothing to help creative entrepreneurs kickstart their business – and we’re here to do just that.
We believe in learning through action.
In getting going, not getting it right.
Because starting is the hardest part.
Color Wyld is here to help make it happen.
April 23, 2015
Create+Cultivate, a conference of influencers, bloggers, and industry insiders sharing their stories and mentoring attendees, celebrated another amazing year in Los Angeles. To kick things off, a conference sponsor and top fashion brand, Splendid, hosted a special dinner. The dinner to fête the panelists was held at the LINE Hotel in Koreatown and guests were treated to both a beautiful meal poolside and a runway show featuring Splendid’s stunning spring fashions! Naturally I was on hand both as a featured guest, and Floral Designer for the night. My flowers set the stage for a fashionable dinner and I rocked plaids and white all night long. How much do you want to eat the fruits right off the table!
Photo Credit: Arielle Vey