If you want to increase your productivity, enhance your earning power, achieve your goals , and reach more overall success in your life (whether measured in money, expertise, or relationships) read on.
This may be especially relevant and hopefully, helpful, for writers. In my own experience, it’s a lonely enterprise, and having a a “support partner” can make a huge difference in your process.
Peer-Mentoring is a system in which two people agree to support each other based on complementary skills and needs, and the partners create a “contract”. The purpose of this process is to create a productively paired “buddy” system, to help both of you achieve your individual goals.
There have been numerous books and articles about mentoring –finding someone senior to you in your field who will help, advise, consult, and coach you to realize your potential.
Lately, we hear a lot about the power of “networking” – “live” networking – going to events, collecting business cards, following up on those contacts. And, of course, we have cyber networking -Facebook,Twitter and the most business-related one, LinkedIn. The end goal is finding the contacts who will be helpful to you or your business.
Peer-Mentoring is a combination or confluence of these two trends – networking and mentoring, whatever business or career you’re engaged in.
I first discovered this idea of Peer-Mentoring when I met another woman consultant who had many of the skills, experiences, and contacts that I lacked; I had some of the resources and talents she needed. We formed a contract with each other, in which we made very clear statements of our separate goals, and then we made clear written commitments to support each other in achieving those goals.
We called it a “loving kick in the “can’ts”.
Our mutual support system was so effective that we found that we had each achieved our one-year goals, after only a few months. During this period, we met once a week, reviewed our short-term and long-term goals, discussed how effectively we were spending our time, and took turns instructing each other on subjects in which one of us wanted more knowledge .
We were so amazed by our success that we decided to teach this process to others. Now, thousands of people all over the country have learned the process and are actively forming Peer-Mentor pairs to help each other to be more successful.
The idea is: you are better at A than your partner, who is better than you at B; you learn more of B, she/he learns more of A and you both end up with with greater competencies/strengths and knowledge than you began with.
The role of the Peer-Mentor is to keep the other on target, to help push through the fears, internal blocks, and procrastination – to believe in the other even when she/he does not believe in herself/loses self-confidence.
Each partner’s goals and objectives are spelled out clearly and explicitly, so each knows what the other means.Then, each partner designs strategies or activities to achieve those goals, with specific indicators to measure success: “how will I know when I’m there?” The goals are the “what” – the strategies are the “how”.
Each peer is, then, both the mentor and the protégé. Complementary skills and needs form the basis of this system of pairing. The pair becomes a relationship for support, guidance, and resource sharing to achieve each individual’s goals- an “accountability” partner.
In subsequent posts, I’ll share ideas and techniques ensure positive results of the “partnership”. I’ll show you ways to measure success as the Peer Mentor relationship develops, how to select the best person for the contract, how to set realistic goals, how to create an actual Peer-Mentor Contract and how best to communicate with your partner.
Wishing you a Fabulous and Successful Writing year!
Elaina Zuker has taught seminars to executives, gives speeches and writes books, including bestseller “7 Secrets of Influence”. Her new book, “A Swift Kick in the Can’ts – the New Peer Mentor Model for Success Now” is now available on Amazon and Amazon Kindle.
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