As you know, Blogalicious 9 will be all about building your tribe. While entrepreneurship soars through the veins of most of us, determining how to make your empire work for you can be difficult at first. In fact, the very thought of your precious ideas materializing is overwhelming. If you’ve found yourself overwhelmed with creating a successful entrepreneur life, here are two things that you must know right now:
1. You’re not alone.
2. You need a mentor or like-minded tribe.
How can I find these people?
Just like you find everything else — through social media. The disclaimer here is that the Internet is overly saturated with gurus, mentors, experts and coaches (so be careful). However, after wading through the clutter of newsletters, free eBooks and exclusive signup deals, serious mentors are still out there waiting for you. Here’s how you can use social media to find them.
Search and use relevant hashtags
Hashtags are the highway to Internet usefulness! Using them can lead to prosperous opportunities if done with intention and focus. Start with simple hashtags like #entrepreneurlife, #entrepreneur, #mentor, #businesscoach or #success. When you find an interesting lead (like Shark Tank’s Damon John who pays attention to a few of these hashtags), follow their social media profiles and look for a website. Almost anyone serious about entrepreneurship has a website, blog or newsletter. Find it and #SignUp.
Look around you
The fact that you’re itching for advancement, you’re probably a member of dozens of groups, masterminds and forums already. This can be fun…at first. Before you know it, your phone is a cluster of never ending notifications and noise you simply don’t need. Take a week to evaluate every loose end you have. Identify the individuals who create the most engaging posts and reach out to them. Ask yourself if those people are more useful than the group itself. If so, skip the group, keep the person and learn from them directly.
Schedule a meeting
You’ve found who you’re looking for, but what’s next? Reach out to them. Sending a quick, “Hi. I admire your success!” could do wonders for you. At most, they’ll respond and get to know you better. At least, they may have a ready-made program, training or book for purchase filled with resources and tips to help stabilize your business.
Using social media to find your mentor is easy and convenient, no? For those who aren’t so technologically savvy, consider going local to find a few mentors. You can find a list of mentor programs here. However, here are a few resources to finding the perfect mentor for your business development:
- SCORE Mentoring. From score.org, “SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship. We have been doing this for over fifty years. Because our work is supported by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and thanks to our network of 11,000+ volunteers, we are able to deliver our services at no charge or at very low cost.”
- MicroMentor. From micromentor.org, “MicroMentor is a free, easy-to-use social network that allows entrepreneurs and volunteer business mentors to connect so they can solve problems and build businesses together. Join a growing community that has already created thousands of mentor-mentee matches and continues to make an impact through the power of mentoring to help small businesses thrive.”
- Mentor Protege Program. From sba.gov, The 8(a) Business Development Program helps small, disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace. Explore the links below for more information about the program.”
- Minority Business Development Agency. From sba.gov, ” MBDA advisors help minority business owners gain access to capital, contracts, market research and general business consulting.”
We hope these tips have given you a jump start on finding your perfect mentor. Feel free to share any additional tips you’ve found useful in this activity.