BusinessOpinionStart-upsStrategy

Why Mentorship Can Make Or Break Your Startup

New year, new home: 4 trends to bring to your home in 2020 - Mobelli (news)

Having a mentor when you start a business can be as important as the actual product or service you’re selling. While the research on the positive impact of mentorship is clear, so many entrepreneurs still don’t have a mentor. 

The journey is long and challenging. To have a mentor as a guide during these early and crucial stages is essential.

In 2019, a study was done to determine what South African small business owners and entrepreneurs gained from having a mentor. According to their findings, of the 209 South African recipients surveyed the majority of the respondents, 73.7% (154), had one or two mentoring relationships. Only 8.10% (17) had more than five mentoring relationships, while 46.6% (97) had been in a mentoring relationship in the past.

Read also: 4 Months After Raising $13.8m, African Startup Chipper Cash Secures Another $30m, Backed By World Richest Man Bezos

Proving that mentoring is a crucial part of most business strategies. Even some of the world’s most successful business leaders have mentors. For example, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin both received mentoring by Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt respectively at the early stages of their businesses.


This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-16.png

Alon Sachs, mentorship Chair of the Entrepreneur’s Organisation (EO) in Cape Town, and co-founder of Mobelli Furniture + Living shares some valuable insights about mentorship and how to go about finding the right one.   

Why a mentor and not an advisor or a coach

Understanding what a mentor is and the value they bring is the first step in finding one. Most people get the three confused. A mentor is often seen as a role-model. Someone you aspire to be like. They have tons of experience and wisdom you can learn from. Advisors offer value by giving specific feedback about specific questions. Their role is more formal and expertise more granular. Coaches on the other hand have trained as a coach and may not have had any experience in starting or running a business.

Mentors are not meant to have all the answers

While a mentor comes with mountains of experience it’s not up to them to advise a mentee on how to overcome the day-to-day challenges of the business. They offer guidance, support, and encouragement regarding long-term goals and challenges as well as career development. Ultimately it’s the business owner’s responsibility to take action. Mentors will be there to champion their efforts as they complete the suggested objectives.

Think long-term

All new businesses should have the future in mind but that is easier said than done when you are the only one making big decisions. Mentors offer an external perspective when it comes to making decisions that can cost you in the long run. They are more easily able to see your pain points as well as new opportunities and areas with room for improvement. You and your team might not always be able to spot the things that a mentor can.

How to find a mentor

Organisations like EO, offer a wide range of networking opportunities where you get to meet other entrepreneurs who may be leaders in their field and who are a potential fit as a mentor. A big bonus is that you won’t have to look far for referrals. Should you not belong to any entrepreneurial communities, look at leaders in your industry that you respect. Then begin by meeting with them to establish if you share a strong connection. If it’s a good fit, start there.

Read full article here


GetFundedAfrica’s mission is to uplift people and economies in Africa through entrepreneurship; helping companies find funding, grow, create jobs and solve society’s greatest challenges

Guest Contribution, GFA Attract & Application Portal For Funding

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-35.png

Guest Contribution: Disruptive Digital Solutions Is Rewiring The DNA Of Banking

Imagine a bank whose customers can tap on a wearable device to make a payment, regularly receive updates on changes they could make to their investment portfolio through AI-generated insights. Read more

GFA Attract Interview

Victor Boyle-Komolafe, the co-founder of Garbage In, Value Out (GIVO), a system that automates and digitises the collection, processing, and sale of recyclable materials. Watch Here

Apply For Funding

GetFundedAfrica provides equity capital from $1,000 to $50,000.
For larger amounts (Above $50,000)
we organize syndicated funding rounds of up to $500,000.
Apply Here

Follow Us

See the source image
See the source image

One thing I always tell myself and made my philosophy is to admit when I need help and I always find somebody to help. It’s crucial to admit it when you are wrong and never make the same mistake again.

— Nkemdilim Begho, Future Software Resources Limited, Nigeria.

Nichole Manhire

Is the media and brand manager at GFA News. She works very closely with editors and podcasters that contribute to telling the African business success story. For marketing and advertising send Nichole an email: nichole@getfundedafrica.com

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Close
Back to top button