If you are like many of us, you were brought into your MLM by a sponsor. The difference between a Mentor and a Sponsor is like the difference between heaven and hell, and pretty much for the same reason.
A sponsor is someone who gets you hyped up about their company, perhaps puts you on a training call or 3-way call with their up-line, and gets you through the sign-up and payment process. If you’re extremely lucky, this person will help you with a question or two, before fading out of your life and cutting you adrift on this new sea of uncertainty to sink or swim on your own in shark infested waters. If you are resourceful enough, and are driven enough, then sometimes (and I do mean sometimes) you can maybe break even and get out having been burned severely enough that you never want to go through that again.
A Mentor, on the other hand, is your lifeline and your guide. This is someone who will answer your 12,942nd question and still be smiling at your enthusiasm at the end. They will encourage you if you show drive, initiative, and perseverance because they want to see you succeed, not just for the return on investment, but because they actually like you and want to see you grow and become, as they grew and became when they were just starting out. They are invested in your success because they want to be, not because they have to. They have that need to give back to their networking community, no matter whether they get a return or not on that time they put into you. They can help you grow your network by providing access to their own group of closely knit people, many of whom probably have more experience than you do in your pinkie. If you have a real relationship with them, they are more open to introducing you to their group of friends. And that’s what real network marketing is about, isn’t it? Growing your relationships with others? Remember that principal about giving without expectation of getting? Mentors, ideally, shouldn’t have ulterior motives, so that you can build a trust-based relationship that will last.
Now, I’m not saying that a mentor will do everything for you. That’s not their job. Their role is giving you a hand when you get stuck, or perhaps suggestions as to how to proceed, or maybe just a sounding board for your ideas. It’s your job to set up and run your business. And this is a business. If you treat it like one, nurture it and feed and water it, it will grow and bear fruit for you. If you neglect it...well, you know what comes after that.
Now, how do you go about finding a mentor? One good place to look might be SCORE.org. Or, for us MLMers and network marketers, BetterNetworker.com is a great community full of useful advice and tips. Mentors are available in many places free of charge, or sometimes for a low fee. A search on any search engine pulls up dozens of organizations like these two, but they are a good place to start.
Yours in service,
(Reprinted from my blog: rayofligntmarketingsolutions.blogspot.com)