Make Your Aspiration Your New Reality
Are you ready for leader mentoring? If you are receiving this newsletter, somewhere in the back of your mind, I bet you are asking yourself that question.
In recent conversations with Bonnie Gorbaty, the Arch director in Boston, she and I thought about how the need for leader mentoring would show up, and what our response to that need would be.
We realized that the people who come to our program have a vague feeling of dissatisfaction. It is a vague feeling because these people are, without exception, successful and have a habit of accomplishment behind them. But in quiet moments, a nagging dissatisfaction rises to the surface.
People often turn to professional coaches for help. For some, this is the right thing to do. Coaching, we believe, treats one’s ambition. It steels one for challenges and encourages the learning of new professional skills. That is a necessary stage in the growth of a leader. But we find the people who come to us have different questions and needs. The questions they ask are too vague to be coached away; they linger and nag long after that promotion or that project’s success. Questions like this bubble up:
“I know I want more out of my career and my profession, but, since it’s not about money, what is that ‘more’ that I want?”
“What is the next step for me, so that I can do something important, something that has meaning?”
These are questions of aspiration. And here at the Arch, aspiration is our business. Leader mentoring gives voice to your aspirations so that they become not just your next career move, but your new reality.
Move from Aspiration to Action with Mentoring
What is aspiration? It is a combination of faith and judgement that propels some people to see wider and more encompassing possibilities, for both themselves and others. The faith of aspiration is not a belief in something or a conviction that what you believe is right and so must happen. It is an open-ended resolve to make a leap up, out and into something that is uncertain but that you sense is important. Aspiration’s judgement calls on your ability to freely assess and tap into your strengths and skills, combine them and inform them to the highest levels of competence. So equipped, you make the leap, seemingly without any further hesitation.
Mentoring gives voice to that faith. In our conversations, people feel the power of what their disturbing and driving concerns for that bigger picture really are. And mentors affirm that power, making it real – as real as one’s material needs and as driving as any ambition for position, status or wealth. Mentoring helps sharpen and activate your judgement. How? Through mentoring, people recall all their strengths, all their talents, interests and loves; mentoring helps them to reconnect with all those skills of character that potently shape their own lives and most powerfully affect others around them.
Mentoring transforms aspirations into actual life decisions and commitments. Suddenly, what seemed as though it demanded a leap, in fact, just needed you to give it some space, do some listening and reflecting in order to help you take flight, on your own.
How does that show up in the lives of our mentees?
- They take on bigger challenges in and for their organizations.
- They concentrate and focus their energies on lifting the whole organization to new levels of importance for employees, customers and communities.
- They start those projects and careers that they always dreamed of.
In other words, they use their judgement to affirm their faith and start living in their aspirations.
Are you ready for mentoring? Do you have the faith to take that step? Can you apply your judgement to bring your best to the table? Can you say “yes” to your aspirations? Then mentoring is right for you.
Write to us about how mentoring helped to put you in touch with your aspiration, faith and judgement. We’d love to hear how mentoring helped you take that step into something more expansive, encompassing, important and meaningful.