Your Boss as Your Mentor
By Stephen Bucaro
If you want to be successful at work, you need to hook up with someone who can
guide through the company's methods of operation and advise you on the company's
culture. A mentor is a wise and trusted counselor or teacher. You need someone
who has proven success and earned respect within the company, and who better
than your boss?
A good mentor can advise you on how to solve problems and how to get things done
on a day-to-day basis within the company. A good mentor can guide you on hoe to
stay out of trouble and protect you when things go wrong. Your mentor does not
have to be your boss, but who else has more experience, knowledge and authority
to help you successful at work?
The down side of having your boss as your mentor is that you will be expected to
adapt their attitude and view of the company, and their style of work, which may
be way different then yours. At some point, you will outgrow your teacher and choose
to do things your own way. Also, some bosses don't have the time or just don't
care to be someones mentor.
Working with a mentor, be they your boss or someone else, DOES NOT mean having
them carry you on their back. They should never to do your work for you. It does
not mean asking them how to do every little thing so you don't have to do any
thinking yourself. It DOES mean asking their opinion of your work, getting their
advise. It DOES mean them helping you by letting you use their connections within
Working with a mentor requires that you have respect for their time and learn their
work habits so that you know when is the best time to approach them for their
advise. And it's not just about them helping you, you should reciprocate for their
help, maybe by buying coffee for them once in a while, maybe by doing them a favor
once in a while.
If you want to be successful at work, you need a mentor who can advise you on how
to solve problems and get things done within the company. Someone who is familiar
with the company culture and has had proven success within the company. Who could
make a better mentor than your boss?