Why Finding a Mentor is a Must After Graduating From University

Learn the value of mentoring for graduates and how you can find one.

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Graduation is an exciting time, filled with hope and excitement for new possibilities and opportunities. However, when it comes to graduating, students often find themselves not knowing where to get started on their professional journey.

The sad truth is that just because you've earned yourself a degree, it doesn't automatically mean you'll land your dream job straight out of university, you need to work for it. Many students fail to realise that it takes more than a degree to get yourself on the working ladder, you need the skills to back you up.

Whether you're just starting in university, graduating in the next year or are fresh out of university and looking for your first job, finding a mentor is something that we truly recommend. Mentors can help lead you on the proper path, giving you the advice and counsel you need to truly prosper.

In this article, we will be talking about the importance of mentoring for graduates, the benefits of mentoring, how to find a mentor, the expectations of your mentor and how you can be a great mentee.

Why is mentoring important for graduates?

Mentoring is an underrated and significant factor that truly helps the success and overall happiness of graduates. Whether you're a new graduate or graduated 20 years ago, you know the feeling of uncertainty that comes after gaining your degree.

Mentors help combat this feeling, by offering guidance and assistance to their mentees, whilst they convert from university students to employees. More often than not, graduates find making their own way into the workplace challenging, and mentors help make this an easier process.

Mentors are invaluable, helping graduates with the career advice they need to get started, providing the best job searching advice, offering guidance, support, and networking recommendations. Another noteworthy benefit of having a mentor is that it can provide a sense of belonging, something especially essential for recent graduates who find themselves feeling lost in the working world.

Remember, mentoring relationships are equally important for both the mentor and mentee, where both parties can share their knowledge, experience and create an environment that focuses on professional and personal development.

What are the benefits of mentoring?

Mentoring over the last few years has become a progressively popular method used by professionals across the globe to help both parties reach their career goals, and become the best version of themselves. As mentioned above, there are many benefits of mentoring such as providing support, guidance, and advice.

However, when it comes to mentoring relationships, some main benefits include:

• Mentees often report feeling more confident after working with a mentor
• Increased leadership skills for both parties involved
• A greater understanding of organisational processes and culture
• Mentoring helps improve job satisfaction and career development
• Enriched problem-solving and decision-making skills
• Mentoring gives networking opportunities
• Career-focused skills are easier to obtain

These benefits are crucial no matter what stage a person is in their career, however, are particularly useful for graduates who are just learning the ropes. Mentoring is all about helping individuals flourish, and there's no surprise that with the various benefits involved, it's becoming a popular tool used.    

How to find a mentor?

Finding a mentor may seem like an intimidating task, but if you're confident in your abilities and yourself, it'll be straightforward to progress. The first step to finding a mentor is knowing precisely what you want from a mentor, before searching. For example, if you want help writing a CV, then look for someone who has experience in that area. It's also important to ensure you have the time to dedicate to your mentoring relationship.

There are many ways to find a mentor. First, speak to your family and friends to see if they know anyone who can help you on your journey, you'll be surprised at the people they have connections with. Your family and friends know you better than anyone else, so know if you'd be able to form a relationship with your mentor or if they don't think it would be a suitable match.

The next way to find a mentor is by using social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter to search for someone you think would be a good fit. Social platforms, particularly LinkedIn, allow people to showcase their professional achievements. When it comes to reaching out to people to be your mentor, take the time to build a relationship with them by reacting to their posts, reading their content and exchanging a few conversations before asking them the big question.

The next way is using an online platform such as PushFar, the world's leading mentoring and career progression platform. PushFar is free to use for open network members, with over 75,000 users looking to help one another with their career and personal development. PushFar allows you to manually find mentors, or connect you with suggested mentors via a smart-matching algorithm.

How to be a good mentee

When you first become a mentee, you might not know what to expect from the mentoring relationship. First and foremost, a mentor should be someone that you trust, since personal information will be shared. A mentor needs to also be someone invested in your success, happy to support and offer feedback when you need it. In addition, a mentor should be someone who can help you grow and develop as a professional and be willing to introduce you to new opportunities and help connect you with other professionals in the field.

Knowing what to expect from a mentoring relationship is an important step in the process, the next is learning how to be a good mentee. Mentees are typically someone who has chosen to learn from a more experienced, senior individual, in their desired field.

If you want to be a good mentee, then you need to do your research, taking the time to truly learn about your mentor's background, experience, and knowledge. Being respectful and attentive is an integral part of being a good mentee, making sure to thank the mentor for their time goes a long way. You should also provide them with the feedback they need to continuously develop their mentoring skills to help improve the overall experience. Remember, you need to be proactive, making sure you ask the mentor questions that will help you develop.

Final thoughts

Finding a mentor to guide you in your career is a great place to get started. We hope this article was able to show you the value being in a mentoring relationship can add to your life. Showing you that it's not an intimidating process, but in fact, something we should all do, to improve our career prospects and opportunities.     

Welcome to PushFar, the world's largest mentoring platform. Whether you're looking to find a mentor or launch your own mentoring programs and schemes, we can help.
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