Friday, February 15, 2013

My First Reverse Mentor

Through my career, I've had a number of people that I'd call mentors, even though the relationships we had were not necessarily defined strictly as such.  I have been fortunate to learn from some very smart, successful, and learned people, and it has definitely played a role in my development and my success.

I'm at the point in my career where I'm now mentoring junior people myself, and it is neat for me to see how things have gone full circle.  

Unfortunately, even at my level in my industry and my organization, I still have a lot to learn.  Especially with a career in Ecommerce.  While I'd like to think that I'm on top of things in my space, that's clearly not the case.  It moves too quick, and I get too mired in realms outside of my space to be as up to speed as I want to be.  Hence, for me to be the leader that I want to be and that our company needs, I need to work harder.  In this instance, I think one way to address it means seeking the help of a reverse mentor.

The whole concept of a reverse mentor is best explained in this recent Wall Street Journal. article.

I'm fortunate to know someone that will be a perfect reverse mentor.  He knows more about the frontiers of my space than I can keep up with while still doing my job.  He has a brilliant career ahead of him, and lucky to have him agree to take me on as a mentee.  

I look forward to kicking off this new relationship and getting back to actively learning from a mentor.  Even at this stage in my career.

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