When to hire a business mentor?

When to hire a business mentor?

Hiring a business mentor is a smart move

Googling this question, you will find a lot of information on what a business mentor is, why you would need one and why you need mentor X, Y or Z. But an equally important question to ask yourself is: when do you need a mentor? Does every entrepreneur need one? How do you know you’re ready for mentorship?

Rest assured: at the end of this article you’ll know the answer to the question and how to apply it to your own situation. Whether you’re new to entrepreneurship, are evolving as a business owner, or have run the same business for a long time.

First, let’s dive into the different approaches to business mentoring.

The “classic approach” to business mentoring

Most business mentors will scrutinize your business and help you to run it more efficiently. With one main goal: a more successful business. They start by looking into the decisions entrepreneurs made and what is holding them back from business success.


    • Maybe they need an extra set of eyes to see the bigger picture

    • Maybe they need guidance in releasing the pressure

    • Maybe they need to be introduced to new people

    • Maybe they need advice to reduce workload

    • Maybe they need to see what they want can be done

In other words: they are a sounding board, give directions, and help their mentees run and grow their businesses. Through advice and teaching them new skills, mentees get more successful in business. Very valuable but they all have – in my view – one flaw in common. They start from the business side of the story. I, on the other hand, believe that you should become successful in business and in life.

The Bernie way of mentoring entrepreneurs

Through years of business mentoring experience, I discovered that entrepreneurs need more than a business mentor. They need more than someone looking at their business. They need a partner who looks at them as a unique individual, not as an entrepreneur.

Being an entrepreneur is only one side of the story. Being successful in business is just one of the challenges they’re facing.

What they need is a mentor who helps them succeed in business and life. Both work side by side. Without balance in business and life, one will suffer without a doubt. That is why I never start by exploring how clients’ businesses are doing. We start with your biggest type of wealth: your health. Because I believe very strongly in this:

You can have all the wealth in the world, without your health you have nothing.

Start with Health

More specifically, look at these three basics:

1. Your water level

Drinking water increases energy levels and improves brain function to help support our busy lives. A glass of water may be all it takes to improve your mood and increase your alertness if you’re feeling drained, sluggish, irritable, or moody.

Your body can suffer severe and harmful repercussions from dehydration, and the brain is no different. Prioritize hydration for both the body and the brain because when you don’t drink enough water throughout the day, your brain performs at a lesser level.

Brain function is negatively impacted by even a 2% dehydration level. Here are a few signs of dehydration that you could experience:


    • Lack of concentration,

    • Not paying attention,

    • No memory,

    • Information processing is slow,

    • Irritability as well as headaches,

Most individuals drink tea or coffee throughout the day, and while tea and coffee dehydrate your brain, water hydrate it.

2. Your fitness level

More active individuals are more intelligent and aware, as well as more creative and productive.  Exercise may not be at the top of your list of growth ideas for your company, but it should be since it is one of the simplest ways for you and your staff to become more intelligent.

Additionally, it lessens stress and fosters creativity. Exercise offers great short- and long-term benefits; it needn’t be tough; even just 10 minutes of daily walking has a big impact on your physical and mental health.

It is amazing how regular exercise can help you achieve success in both work and life. Any business person, entrepreneur, or philanthropist you see will tell you that exercise is an important component of their daily routine.

3. Your rest level

Failure is indeed a foregone conclusion in the absence of downtime. Your efficiency at work depends on getting enough sleep because your body would otherwise be constantly stressed. Your mental condition is affected when your body is under stress; therefore both your body and mind need to rest. You risk burning out if you continue in this direction.

A chocolate bar was advertised on television many years ago with the claim that it helps you work, rest, and play. I constantly make sure that the business owners and people, in general, have these three components—work, rest, and play—as part of my mentoring. Without them, tragedy is what awaits you. For other people, it can take a little longer, but it will happen.

Ask yourself: how are you doing? Do you see patterns? What patterns do you see, looking at your three health levels?

Once you have those three basics straight, look at your family life and how your business fits in. It’s important your private life is fitting around the business, not into the business.

Concentrate on life

To figure out if you have your priorities right, concentrate on three aspects:


    • Work

    • Rest

    • Play

Again, how are you doing? Are you balancing life and business? Or have you found a way to fit your life around your business? What questions do you have analysing your Work, Rest and Play?

Just like many business owners, you don’t know what you know until you are working with a mentor. There are certain things in business you must learn to keep your business flowing. Being successful, on the other hand, is not only a matter of being a ‘better’ entrepreneur.

You need to realize that as an entrepreneur you are wearing many hats. The way you fill out what being an entrepreneur means to you, depends not only on your vision but also on the situation you are in. These hats or business personalities are Entrepreneur, Manager, and Technician. Or: the EMT-model.

What kind of entrepreneur are you?

The Entrepreneur

An entrepreneur is strategic and looks at things with a long-term vision. He’s a bit of a dreamer even, envisaging constantly where the business could be going. He spends time on strategy every single day to make sure the business is going in the direction of his vision. In terms of money, he looks at the business as equity.

The Manager

Managers look at their business in a strategic and tactical way. They focus both on the present and the near future. For this they coordinate and plan: they achieve results by working with others. In short: he makes sure the entrepreneurial vision turns into reality. He focuses on being in control of what comes in and goes out in terms of money.

The Technician

A Technician works hands-on. He is productive and delivers concrete products or services. In other work: he gets the work done! But he only looks at the present, at what he can do today. The more he does in a day, the more money he makes. He looks at money in a way that action means payment. A good example is an hourly rate. Making more money means working more hours or increasing the hourly rate.

Do you need a business mentor?

If you are constantly wearing one of the business personalities’ hats, you are facing some struggles. A technician, for example, will easily burn out in search of scaling his business when he sticks to the hourly rate system. An entrepreneur won’t bring in any money if he doesn’t combine vision with action. A manager will get stuck managing other people without taking time to envisage what the business could be, he will be running a business with no goal to get to.

So if you feel that:


    • your health is not your priority,

    • you’re squeezing your family into your business life, or

    • you don’t know how to be the Entrepreneur, Manager, and Technician in your business

you need a business mentor.

You need an outsider looking in. A sounding board who is not emotionally attached to your company. Someone to enable you, to help you, to get knowledge out of you.

If I learned one thing in decades of mentoring business owners it is this:

Together we can see more, feel more, hear more, learn more, grow more, and expand more. Together we reach higher.

In short: every business owner needs a mentor. You can’t afford not to have one as you have too much to lose.

When you’re ready, let me know. I’m offering you an hour of my time so you can ask all your questions. I can’t wait to hear about your story, your vision, and your plans. And most of all, to give you some of my golden nuggets to help you make your dreams come true.

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