Many of us have had excellent mentors, how do you guys go about personally maintaining and developing these relationships?


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  • Making sure to be absolutely on the ball about keeping in touch regularly, and reaching out when you have updates and over time, encouraging them to share with you even more connections to latch on to. There is no such thing as being too needy with this and as long as you're respectful of people's time, they will always welcome you keeping in touch.
  • I have found that my mentors have beocme friends over time, so that tells me that I develop and maintain these relationships like I would develop and maintain friendships! Hope this helps :)
  • such a good topic, I agree there is not a one size fits all solution. For me a mentor/ coach is someone I turn to when I need expert advice, which my friends and family cannot provide. And I found a CEO in my field of work, who made a career switch into coaching/ and connecting young talent. He helped me as a coach in my career path and connected me to some people and referred me as an advisor for some of his clients. So in affect i can help others. I have different coaches for different questions and I tend to see them every year or so. And now I am giving advice career to students who want to move ahead in trends, which is really rewarding.
  • I always update my spreadsheets and add contact emails for Art Directors or studios and I email them every 4 months with a digital mini zine about my latest work. Keeping in touch with them on Instgaram helped me alot too. Good Luck
  • Thanks so for all your advice about mentors! Being early on in my career mentors have been KEY to developing my career. Thanks everyone!
  • LinkedIn is the number 1 destination for this, and keeping in regular contact. Every 1-3 months is enough in my opinion unless a particular mentio turns into a close friend and this will naturally increase!
  • I try to get regular meetings in as much as possible. But I also try to share resources, interesting readings or work that inspires me as often as possible over Whatsapp or email. It is what I benefited from the most when I had my first mentor. This also helps me have regular contact even when it's not possible to meet and it helps us have conversations we can draw value from. Oh and I often gift books to my mentors, whenever I discover something that I think they'll find interesting.
  • I think to maintain the relationship it's important to take a keen interest in the work your mentor is developing and asking questions about their livies as well as questions around your own journey. I've felt the strongest mentor / mentee relationships have been when it feels like a two way street and not too one sided - particularly after the first year or so.
  • I believe you gain those relationships simuotonesly as your confidence as a designer grow while you develop your work and get positive feedback you starting to feel good with you work and happy thats a momentum. I remember when i started i was thinking of so many persons in my sourounding as a mentors that it made my shy really i couldnt speak i was so distant i guess i had nothing to show so my selfconfidence was zeroo. But at some point i decided 2 years ago to showcase my work behance the dots before that i was scared of rejection it hurst alot and i beleive many creatives struggle with that But 2 years ago i wanted to see reaction and finally know if im crap or good designer First was behance and after i put my logo portfolio few hours later first comment came from the huge mentor one of top designers i was like impossible but we became friends until today And since that moemtn i feel more comfrotable talking with other designers and i dont think its about who is better designer etc bla bla its about connection you dont have to be perfect to write an email on behance to the mentors you choose even if one writes back that means he is valuble person. Its all about empathy and commonc sense of beauty
  • Hey Lynne, mentors are so important and when you find one that's the right fit, it's like you've unlocked a superpower! For me, each one of these relationships is different, so I manage and develop them accordingly. I'd definitely look to discourage anyone reading this from trying to apply a one-size-fits-all strategy, as it can often come across as insincere. It could be good to have goals in place for regular catch-ups, the sooner the relationship becomes routine for both parties, the more likely it is to last a long time.

    Renee Lee wrote a brilliant piece on mentorship for our site (http://bit.ly/MENT0RS) where she encourages us to completely re-think how we frame mentors, how we select them and how we manage those relationships. Hopefully there are a few interesting points there for you to explore in response to your question too.

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