Not all mentors are created equal. In fact, business coach Neal Glatt advises those snow and ice management professionals seeking to further their professional careers and ambitions to first consider the fact that mentors are not all created equal.
“You can walk around any trade show and find people who want to give you advice,” says Glatt, a Certified Strengths Coach through Gallup and a John Maxwell Certified Coach, Speaker and Trainer. “They’re not mentors.”
For nearly two decades, Glatt cut his teeth as an account executive with Boston-based Case Snow Management, playing a significant role in that company’s ascension from a single-truck operation to a $40 million industry powerhouse. During this time, Glatt honed his own professional abilities and leadership skills with the help of mentors. In 2017, Glatt took his passion for helping others find fulfillment into a professional coaching role. Today, he serves as managing partner of GrowTheBench.com and mentors professionals in both the snow and landscape industries.
Glatt outlines the five traits he looks for in a mentor and strives for when asked to serve as a mentor for someone.
They will be a worthy example.
“These individuals walk the walk. When you tsssalk to people who they manage directly, you’re hearing the same things they’re saying. And [the mentor’s] personal life is a reflection of the values you feel are worthwhile.”
A good mentor is available.
“My rule of thumb is an hour a week, which is a lot in this rapid-paced society. You need to make sure the mentor can spend time with you. Unfortunately, a lot of good mentors are just too busy.”
“I don’t want someone who is just great at what they’ve done. I want someone who has made a lot of mistakes in what they’ve done. That’s where we really learn. When I can talk to somebody about operations and they say, ‘Here’s exactly what I did wrong.’ Now I know that they really understand what they’re doing is right. I want somebody who’s gone through this and said, ‘Here’s where I messed up and I’ve learned from that.’”
“Wisdom is knowing what to do with what you know. It’s being able to put the rubber to the road and being able to apply this knowledge. Mentors who can help bridge that gap really start to embody that wisdom.”