We all play roles in life: husband, colleague, boss, etc. In each role we interact with different groups in different ways. Sometimes we get to be friends and other times we are managing and directing. The role I am most proud of is that of mentor.
I’ve been volunteering as a mentor with Mentor Jackets through the Student Alumni Association at Georgia Tech for several years. It’s been an amazing experience of staying involved. But most importantly, helping someone else work through their time at Georgia Tech and in a critical part of life. It’s an incredibly empowering program.
Part of the value goes to the introspection that is required on the part of both mentor and mentee. The program is ultimately about providing a platform for two people to help each other grow as individuals. Growth does not only flow from the wise mentor to the young student, it goes up as well. Often in crazy ways.
This year has been a good one for me because I learned some interesting facts about myself that I never would have suspected other than by working with an incredibly sharp Tech student. Somehow between last year and this, I learned how to relax and help others relax. This may not sound like much, but it was a milestone in my growth. And honestly helped me create a better relationship than I would have otherwise.
I encourage everyone to go out and have that mentoring relationship. It doesn’t have to be within your company, industry, university or local club. It could be anything. The value is worth it.