Given this month honors all the “Dads” in the world I started thinking about my dad and some of those great ‘life lessons’ he taught me. He was a great mentor and dad and several of my greatest memories were of he and I fishing together. He showed me how to bait my hook (not a delicate operation, especially with worms) and how to exercise patience when waiting for the fish to bite. And while he did not realize it at the time, he was teaching me about mindfulness as we would sit either on the bank or in the boat and watch not only our fishing lines but the world around us. Often for hours just watching and waiting.
I can recount many mentors in my life who profoundly changed my perspective and while I never really thought about these people being my mentors at the time – they absolutely were!
There was Sam, my manager at the “Dollar” store where I worked as a teenager starting as a cashier. He saw potential in me and indicated I could do about any job he had at the store, and he was right! I became a stockperson, I cut and sold fabrics from the fabric department, and I even did payroll for him, and I did not even have any training!
There was Joanna at the advertising newspaper I worked at selling advertising. I remember the day she called me in to her office and shared with me that I should stop wearing jeans and start dressing more professionally. I can tell you that at the time I was not happy with her feedback however looking back, it was sage advice. Off to the store to uplevel my wardrobe.
Of course, there will always be John Chambers who was one of the greatest mentors in my career and in my life. He taught me the skills I needed to have to be his “Office Rockstar” Executive Assistant as well as the power of positivity and what a simple hug can do even in the most challenging times.
I still have wonderful mentors in my life that are always guiding me in the direction I am meant to travel such as Joan Burge, the CEO of Office Dynamics Int’l and Ingrid Gudenas of Effective Training Solutions. They have encouraged me to continue to step up and out of my comfort zone because that is where the Magic happens.
So, I pay tribute to my wonderful Dad and all the other mentors in my life, past and present.
Being a mentor is one thing we can all do for others in our lives whether professionally or personally and I can say for certain that being mentored by someone, even if you do not realize it at the time, pays off!