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Thread: Mentors - Do you have one? Are you one?

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Do you have or are you a mentor?

    As many of you know I am on an ongoing quest to improve every aspect of my life, but the one thing that I have realized is that I lack a mentor, and I am starting to think that this is a significantly important aspect of highly successful people.

    What suggestions would you have for finding a good mentor, and how would you approach that person?

    Furthermore, are you a mentor or do you have a mentor and how important has that relationship been?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    What do you consider "success" to be?

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    I have had several mentors; most specfically, the chief planner in a position I held for 8 years. I was his "right-hand" planner and learned more about planning and the county I was in than I would have imagined otherwise, like being the only one he trusted to go before the BCC on difficult cases.

    I think I have been kind of a mentor to Trail Nazi, along with sisterceleste.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    There are people who go through life without mentors who are successful beyond compare. Sometimes they refer to it as the School of Hard Knocks. When I meet these people, they have a great sense of humility and chutzpah.

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    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    I have had several mentors ...[snip]...
    Same here. Current boss has guided me the most in terms of political savvy. I know the decision before they open the hearing public (to frog look for).

  6. #6
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jordanb
    What do you consider "success" to be?
    To me success is achieving my personal goals.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    My graduate advisor was a mentor, and I began to think of a director in another city as somewhat fitting the role. It is a very important thing, though, to know when a mentor is no longer a mentor. You have to break off on your own, and often. If your mentor is good, they know this and will help you off.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

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    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Cardinal
    ....[snip].... If your mentor is good, they know this and will help you off.
    Huh? He look too for frog?

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    If you like... I'll be your mentor.

    WHO'S YOUR MENTOR!!!

    Anyways... I guess you could say my boss is my mentor. But not really. Our office is pretty much completely and totally hands off. We're pretty much thrown into the deep end and it's either sink or swim.

    Never really put much thought into a "mentor."
    Every time I look at a Yankees hat I see a swastika tilted just a little off kilter.
    Bill "Spaceman" Lee

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    I don't know if I have ever previously had a mentor but, at the moment, I have two people in my life who are just extremely good friends who happen to be substantially older than I am. There is give and take but these relationships foster personal growth in a way that nothing else does. They both tell me I do the same thing for them (foster personal growth) -- because (according to them) I am a deep thinker, I do not jump to judgment of them, and they can bounce ideas off of me in a way that has never before been available to them. One of them specifically mentors my development as a website designer.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Glasshouse's avatar
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    Mentor uh?

    My mentor died last year of the big C. I split off from him many years ago and I guess I've been a mentor to many young employee's. Most of them are still in the biz, so I guess that makes me a sort of mentor.

    However I've noticed I have the strange luck of turning out a lot of bar room brawling, beer drinking, rednecks..........hmm.

    Bob

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Trail Nazi's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    I think I have been kind of a mentor to Trail Nazi, along with sisterceleste.
    Both you and Sisterceleste have been mentors to me. Thanks for all your help!! You guys are great mentors and great planners!!!

  13. #13
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Breed
    WHO'S YOUR MENTOR!!!
    I don't have one right now. I would like to find someone who has gone the same path that I am looking at going.

    One of the guys in the office is kind of a mentor to me, but his advice is to get my masters, work my year, and apply for something better.

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    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Do the voices I hear in my head count?
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

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    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by donk
    Do the voices I hear in my head count?
    My mentor is Rumpy and beer. They keep me in line.
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."


    Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro): Heat 1995

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    My first boss out of college was definitely a mentor. Since then, most have just been mental. Can't say I have one right now, although I think the opportunity has presented itself when I wasnt paying attention.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    For an all too brief moment, I like to consider that I mentored elGuapo. I suppose that I am to blame in part for how he turned out.

  18. #18
    Cyburbian JNL's avatar
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    I went to an information evening last week to find about about becoming a mentor for a child.. from the brochure: "Challenge for Change is a mentoring and family support programme that works with 9 to 13 year-olds who are experiencing difficulty. They are matched with carefully selected and trained adults who provide guidance, friendship and support". The course has a bit of a focus on reading which is cool, I would be keen to share my love of reading

    I wanted to do it but the training is quite intensive and dates clash with 2 triathlons I've entered. So I think I'll try to do the next block of training in 6 months.

  19. #19
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNL
    I went to an information evening last week to find about about becoming a mentor for a child.
    Poor Kid... Just kidding, I think that you will make a great mentor.

  20. #20
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    I'll be sure and start mentoring just as soon as folks start idolizing me. Yep, just as soon as they start......anytime now......people waiting to be mentored by Maister should get in line over there..... Don't all start shoving at once....
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister
    I'll be sure and start mentoring just as soon as folks start idolizing me. Yep, just as soon as they start......anytime now......people waiting to be mentored by Maister should get in line over there..... Don't all start shoving at once....
    I'm sorry... did you say something?

  22. #22
    Cyburbian GeogPlanner's avatar
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    My mentor is college was a professor who, despite what other had to say, I think is truly brilliant and challenging. Being an emertus student, I don't have the same contact as I used to. He is grading my final graduate works this semester so I can graduate on my birfday.

    These days, professionally, I do look up to a director of one of the local agencies. He is to the profession what my professor was to academia.

    Although, I don't know if my mentors ever knew they were mentors.
    Information necessitating a change of design will be conveyed to the designer after and only after the design is complete. (Often called the 'Now They Tell Us' Law) - Fyfe's First Law of Revision

    We don't believe in planners and deciders making the decisions on behalf of Americans. -- George W. Bush , Scranton, PA -- 09/06/2000

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    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Mentors - Do you have one? Are you one?

    In looking at successfulk people and speaking to friends and people I know who seem "successful" many have mentors.

    Do you have a mentor? If yes, what benefit have they been to you?
    How did you meet?
    Why did you decide this type of relationship would be mutually benficial?

    If you are a mentor to someone, why did you choose to do it?
    How did you meet?
    Why did you decide this type of relationship would be mutually benficial?

    Any other commetns and observations about mentors would be appreciated.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  24. #24
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    I'd like to think of myself as a mentor to my employees, but I don't know if that qualifies. Every evaluation includes training suggestions and advice on 'how to get ahead' in the field. I focus a lot on personal and professional growth with those I supervise, so I'd like to think that I am fulfilling some of their mentoring needs. That being said, I'm not sure if that meets the definition of what you are talking about.

    I have never had a mentor myself, but I have had a lot of great supervisors that helped me make good career decisions.

  25. #25
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by nerudite View post
    I'd like to think of myself as a mentor to my employees, but I don't know if that qualifies. Every evaluation includes training suggestions and advice on 'how to get ahead' in the field. I focus a lot on personal and professional growth with those I supervise, so I'd like to think that I am fulfilling some of their mentoring needs. That being said, I'm not sure if that meets the definition of what you are talking about.
    I am thinking of a person, who is not a direct supervisor who for some reason takes an interest in your career path and you and works with you to provide guidance and advice in difficult times.

    I am wondering if this is more of a business thing than a gov't or even planning thing.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

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