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The Transformative Power of Mentorship in Achieving Excellence

Lifestyle By Apr 09, 2024 No Comments

When cultivating excellence and refining our crafts, a good example always comes in in handy. It serves as an ideal we can aim for so that we can side-step mediocrity as we navigate the journey of our careers. In a recent conversation with Bashir, we explored his mentorship work and the value of setting a good example in a given domain of work.

According to Proverbs 27:17, as iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. One way to interpret the verse is that people learn from other people, especially those who demonstrate the kind of excellence that we are trying to embody. When we notice this about ourselves, we come to the humble realisation that we need someone to learn from. And this someone is not the kind that will give us theoretical propositions but rather they will show us what we are after and how to achieve it.

Emulation and participation are key elements of learning. You can observe this in children as they learn. Children always start by trying to do the thing they are learning to do. They take clues from what they see others doing and then give it a go. Essentially, all parents are mentors to their children by default.

This means that for one to be a mentor, in some way, they become a parent to their mentee about whatever they are mentoring them about. The mentor has this deep sensitivity to what needs to happen to bring about improvement and overcome mediocrity to bring about excellence. They share their lived experience of the skills they had to cultivate, how they had to apply them, and the method they have come to develop so that they can apply those skills most efficiently. When the method is applied consistently, expertise emerges over time.

The journey of mentorship has its challenges. It comes with the responsibility to confront and rise above mediocrity. Bashir’s journey to mentorship was sparked by this very realization—the recognition of a gift within and the desire to elevate others by sharing this gift. Inspired to act, he established a regular meetup for his professional community, creating a nurturing environment where knowledge and experiences are exchanged freely, empowering every participant to reach new heights.

Starting anything is always daunting; however, once you start, what needs to happen next starts to become more and more clear. This is because you have to be moving to be able to see what’s relevant and make the necessary adjustments so that you can continue moving. It doesn’t matter how long you look at the navigation route for on the map, if you don’t start moving it will look exactly the same and you will not learn more than what is right there before you. The rest of the information is to be obtained in the practical activity. For example, Bashir shared that he learned that during the community meet-up events, the members had varying levels and types of experience. This then allowed for everyone to get something out of it. Through collaboration, all the members were getting more than they put into the pot of learning and shared experiences.

In essence, mentorship embodies the profound exchange between individuals striving towards a common goal of excellence. It is a testament to the transformative power of sharing wisdom, experiences, and encouragement. As we navigate our professional and personal landscapes, let us seek those who inspire us to transcend our limitations and aspire to those who look to us for guidance. Mentorship, then, becomes not just an act of imparting knowledge but a shared journey of discovery, growth, and boundless potential.

When we embrace the challenge of mentorship, we accept a noble calling—one that benefits both mentor and mentee. Mentorship creates strong bonds of respect, admiration, and shared aspirations. While challenging, it’s a journey that is very rewarding, offering the satisfaction of witnessing the blossoming of potential into full-fledged excellence. Let us, therefore, endeavor to be both seekers and givers of wisdom, for in the cyclical dance of learning and teaching, we find the true essence of mentorship and the key to unlocking our collective excellence.

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