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Swim! is officially out and entrepreneurs, public speakers, business leaders, and industry leaders are already eager to learn the principles they’ll learn in this book and apply it to their teams and organizations. Here are 3 things I want you to take away from this book when you get your copy:

Becoming a shark is a life-long process

I love the part in the book when Scotty asks his mentor if he’s finally adopted a shark mindset, and is surprised and a little offended when Drew tells him no. Drew explains that although he now knows and understands The Sacred Six, he’s going to spend the rest of his life practicing them and incorporating them into every decision he makes. Scotty was a little disappointed in this answer, but it is a good reminder that we are always a work in progress. We are always learning, growing, and getting better. There is always more to learn, and if we ever get to the point where we think we’ve “made it,” and stop our journey to self-improvement, we are doing ourselves and those around us a significant disservice. 

“Facing The Fear Is Faster”

This is something Scotty learns early on in the book. He finds himself in the middle of the woods, as it is getting dark, and standing at a crossroads. Through a series of quick decisions, he learns that sometimes just facing the fear is faster. Just doing the thing you’re scared of is so much faster than all of the things you will do to try to avoid it. He could have taken a well-lit, safer path to get to his destination, but it would have taken twice as long. He went the way that made him nervous and uncomfortable and found himself at his destination much sooner than he thought. “Facing the fear is faster” is a motto he uses throughout his life to remind himself of the power of stepping out of his comfort zone.

“There’s hope for the parasite.”

This is a line Paul and Scotty say a few times during their adventure out on the boat. As they dive into the characteristics of a shark, a suckerfish, and a parasite, they begin to realize that everyone can have parasitic tendencies. There are times, in our personal lives and our careers, that we can take more than we give. There are times we focus on our own best interests instead of the interests of others. But just because we make these choices, it does not define us. There is hope for us when we act in a self-serving way, and the faster we identify this behavior and thought process, the sooner we can change and work towards adopting a shark mindset instead. 

I’m excited to hear what you think about the book and the lines or chapters that make an impact on you! 

My challenge for you this week: 

  1. Order Swim! if you haven’t already
  2. One morning this week, instead of scrolling social media when you wake up, listen to this short YouTube video and watch how it dramatically shifts your mindset and in turn, the rest of your day. 

 

One of the most important things you can do to take benefit from your mentor/mentee relationship is to ask the right questions. Having a mentor allows you to learn from someone who has more experience in a particular industry or field than you do. But how do you know what to ask? We’ve put together a list of questions that we think will help you develop a stronger relationship with your mentor and allow you to get the most out of this unique relationship.

Ask About Experiences

Ask your mentor to share experiences and wisdom from their professional journey. These could be questions like:

  1. What did you do to land your current position?
  2. Five years ago, what was your five-year plan? Are you where you thought you’d be?
  3. Have you ever had a demanding boss? How did you manage that relationship?

Ask About Self-Awareness

Impact players are self-aware. They are quick to identify how they fit in certain situations and how they react and interact with others. You mentor can help answer questions regarding self-awareness such as:

  1. Where do you see my strengths, and what should I focus on to improve?
  2. What do you see as some of my blind spots?
  3. How do you think others perceive me?
  4. How does leadership view me?

Ask About Skill-Building

The beauty of working with a mentor is the ability to learn from their mistakes. This allows you to learn the lessons that can help catapult your career without the growing pains that come with it. Make sure you are checking in with your mentor about your specific skills and weaknesses and asking what they suggest you do to build your professional skill set. Ask questions like:

  1. How do you approach risk-taking?
  2. What new skills do I need to move ahead?
  3. How can I become a more assertive negotiator?

In our new book SWIM!, Scotty asks Drew a lot of game-changing questions to help him reach his full potential. Asking the right questions is the best way to learn from your mentor and set yourself up for success. 

My challenges for you this week: 

  1. Order SWIM to be one of the first to read this dynamic book about mentorship
  2. Pick two of these questions to ask your mentor. Modify them as needed.

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When a young, eager entrepreneur approached me at a speaking engagement and asked how I got to this point in my career, I looked right at her and said. “I found a mentor.” I think she was expecting me to say that I took a bunch of classes or got some fancy degrees or started public speaking on a street corner and got picked up by an agent. “Finding a mentor helped me get to where I am today in five important ways,” I told her. I explained that:

Mentors point out your weaknesses

Many times, we surround ourselves with people who tell us how great we are. And all this can be great for our self-esteem; it leaves no room for growth. To reach the next level in your career through mentorship, you need to find a mentor who is going to tell you the truth. Someone who will be able to identify your weaknesses and present them to you with grace and courtesy. Successful business leaders don’t hang out with people who tell them what they want to hear. Successful business leaders hang out with people who can carefully and tactfully address their weaknesses and create a plan to work on them.

Mentors build on your strengths

Just like addressing your weaknesses is crucial in getting to the next level, so is building on your strengths. You probably already have a pretty good idea of what your strengths are, but a mentor can help you see them in a new perspective. A mentor’s job is to identify your strengths and continue building on them. When a mentor can identify your strengths and give you ideas and guidance on how to improve upon them, you are next level bound

Mentors teach you something new

One of the most obvious advantages of working with a mentor is learning from their experiences. You will get the most out of your mentorship experience when you acknowledge that there will always be someone who knows more than you do. Being a good listener and being willing and able to learn from their mistakes can be priceless in advancing your career. 

Mentors offer outside perspective 

Sometimes being too close to a problem or decision makes it difficult to come up with a solution. Your mentor can serve as an extra set of eyes and ears on an important issue or decision. When it is time to make an important decision that may impact the trajectory of your career, having a mentor to offer outside perspective is extremely valuable. 

Mentors connect you with people

Chances are, your mentor knows a lot of people who could be instrumental in the next step in your career. Building a professional relationship with a mentor is the link between you and other valuable impact players in your industry. One of the most significant advantages of finding a mentor is stepping into their network and having access to their connections.

This week, my challenge for you is to:

  1. Order SWIM! If you haven’t already
  2. Connect with your mentor and ask them to identify your top 3 strengths and top 3 weaknesses

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Membership programs

Recently, there seems to be an influx of mentorship programs geared toward small business leaders and entrepreneurs. The whole idea behind these programs is to set people up with a mentor, for a fee. Some programs work by allowing entrepreneurs to use the platforms to focus on growing their business. They then receive mentoring in return for equity in the company. While these programs can be helpful, they can be an expense that many start-up businesses can’t afford. Usually, there is no refund if you’re not matched with the right mentor, so it’s one of the riskier ways to connect with a mentor. 

Join A Masterclass

Now I may be biased, but I can not tell you how many people have connected through our Next Level Mastermind Class and formed invaluable professional connections because of it. A masterclass is a place where eager, dedicated, passionate, and goal-oriented professionals come together to learn everything they can about getting to the next level. Our mastermind class is unique because not only do you get access to a handful of professionals who could significantly improve your business, but you get one-on one-coaching from Antoinette and myself, two people dedicated to your success. 

Social Media

Social media platforms like LinkedIn can be great for networking and mentorship. Social media has a way of connecting people that may have never connected without it. Social networking sites, even Facebook and Instagram, if used correctly, can help you reach out to people who have more experience in your field. Reaching out to those people increases your chances of learning something new and making intentional steps towards your goals. Put yourself out there and don’t be afraid to be seen. If you come across someone on social media who is already doing what you want to do, reach out, and make your intentions clear. Do not let the fear of rejection stop you from using social media to possibly connect with the one person who could dramatically change the trajectory of your career

Cold Emailing

This one can be tough, but hear me out. There’s an old saying that “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it.” Cold calling has been a business strategy for decades, and although we have newer, more innovative ways to communicate with potential customers (and mentors), there is something valuable about the cold call. Cold emailing is the same thing. If you know someone who you feel could significantly help you grow as a business leader, reach out to them. Offer to work for them, for free. Ask if there is anything you can do, anything at all, to learn from them. Expect a few unanswered emails, but also know that persistence and dedication will always pay off.

Personal Network

Finding a mentor can be as easy as making a list. Make a list of the professionals in your life and what their strengths and accomplishments are. Do you know anyone who has started their own business? Wrote a book? Did whatever it is you are trying to do? Make a list of the people you know personally who could help you on your journey to the next level. Finding a mentor can be a very formal thing, or it can be two friends who see each other’s potential and work together to better themselves. Imagine how you would react if someone you knew reached out and asked to learn a thing or two from you. You’d probably be honored. Asking someone you know to be your mentor is a compliment, so don’t be afraid to ask.

We are just days away from the launch of our new book, SWIM! It covers the importance of mentorship in an easy, funny, relatable, and impactful way. I wrote a book about mentorship because it is THAT important.

My challenge for you this week: Use one of these methods to step out of your comfort zone and ask someone to be your mentor. The success of your business could depend on it. 

 

In chapter two, one of the main characters, Scotty, finds himself in the middle of the woods with just a canvas bag of supplies. He’s been left there, the sun is setting, and he’s absolutely sure there are bears all around him. Because he has no other option, he uses the tools in his bag to find his way to security and safety. Waiting there for him at the end is his mentor sitting back comfortably, awaiting his arrival.

Scotty’s mentor had given him everything he needed in that tote bag to be successful. But most importantly, he saw something in Scotty that Scotty did not see in himself. It was not until after he was pushed out of his comfort zone that Scotty was able to see his full potential.

I can relate so closely to this part of the book because I’ve had so many mentors in my life who have pushed me out of my comfort zone. They didn’t tell me what to do; they didn’t tell me the things I wanted to hear. They gave me the tools and the resources I need to be successful and then let me do it on my own. This is what it true mentor does.

In business and life, we have to take advantage of the opportunities we have to mentor and be mentored. We must constantly be looking for people who have more experience than we do and strive to learn from their mistakes. We must also always be looking for those who could use a little guidance to get to their next level.

This week, I have three challenges for you.

Number One: Pre-order your copy of Swim

Number Two: Reach out to someone who has been a mentor to you. Thank them for their wisdom, time, energy, and advise and tell them specifically what their contribution had on your life.

Number Three: Look for opportunities to mentor someone new in the game. Without being pushy, offer gentle advice, words of wisdom, or guidance to help someone make their next right step.