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4 Reasons Why You Need More Than One Mentor

4 Reasons Why You Need More Than One Mentor

Life tends to be a lot harder navigating your unchartered territories without some help and wisdom from those who’ve journeyed the arduous roads before you; well, I’ve personally found this to be true. At times, I can be rough around the edges and even a complete rookie in certain aspects of my life.

At 18 years old, I realised that if I wanted to grow, learn and challenge myself I needed to trade some self-help books and youtube clips (these can be helpful but should not replace human interaction) for spending time with older, wiser people that I admired and start learning from them. After all, they’ve got a fair bit more life experience than I do plus they’ve been around the block a few times. Life is designed to be shared with others and when we choose to surround ourselves with them there is potential for more growth; you can only grow so much in isolation.

A mentor is a trusted adviser

Having a trusted adviser can be beneficial and can add a whole new flavour to your journey. I personally believe that having more than one mentor is where the ground-breaking magic happens. (Please keep in mind that multiple mentors are acquired over time and not in haste!)

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Here are 4 reasons why you need more than one mentor:

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    #1 More Than One Mentor = More Room to Grow

    Think of it like looking at a diamond; there are many facets to one diamond which all contribute to its brilliance.

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    I have personally found that having more than one person mentor you is valuable because no one person has the gifts, talents, time or ability to be able to advise about every single aspect of your life. Have one mentor that you discuss business/work with, the other finances, the other marriage/relationships/family and another fitness or lifestyle improvement.

    Whatever you want to improve on or excel in look for the people that are winning in that area of life and that you aspire to be like. Get in their world, take them out for coffee and glean from them BUT (this is a huuuuuge ‘but’) use wisdom and discretion when choosing mentors; you want people that are going to empower you, not compete with you.

    #2 More Than One Mentor = More Blindspots Addressed

    Humanity is imperfect and flawed, that’s what makes it so beautiful. None of us is excluded from this imperfection and we could all use some help.

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    Not every person will have access to a concentrated amount of view-time into one particular aspect of your life, so there may be a number of potentially hazardous blind spots that go unaddressed. Having more than one mentor offers some assurance that you are covered from more than one angle. More than one blind spot addressed, more personal growth and development, baby!

    #3 More Than One Mentor = More Advice & Opinions to Shape Your Worldview

    At the end of the day, the decision is ultimately yours; you choose what advice or opinions you take on board.

    The beauty of having more than one mentor is that you have a platter of advice and wisdom that you are able to choose from that can shape and mould your world view. Having mentors with more experience in life adds a depth to your journey and provides a bigger perspective into who you are, who you have the potential to become and what that transition would take.

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    #4 More Than One Mentor = More Accountability

    Accountability may sound like a cuss word but just walk with me for a moment.

    Accountability is NOT you needing someone to babysit you or micromanage your life. You are the one that is in control of your life, you are the one that ultimately has to take responsibility for your choices and you have the freedom to choose who mentors you and who doesn’t. Accountability IS, however, a choice to allow the people that you love and trust (that you have chosen to include into your life) to be able to keep you to your word and ask you the tough questions. Have mentors that want to see you win and aren’t afraid to question you, your choices and your motives. Accountability makes sure you keep rocking up to practice even when you’ve given up on the game.

    Mentoring is an awesome way to not only involve yourself in the community of your choosing, you make friends along the way that care enough to have the tough conversations with you. The wound of a friend is always sweeter than the kiss of an enemy; mentors are a safe place for you to scrape a few knees, fall off your bike a few times, learn and ultimately begin that transition into being the person who you’ve always wanted to be.

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    Ashleigh Clark

    Legal Clerk and Author

    4 Reasons Why You Need More Than One Mentor

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    The Productivity Paradox: What Is It And How Can We Move Beyond It?

    The Productivity Paradox: What Is It And How Can We Move Beyond It?

    It’s a depressing adage we’ve all heard time and time again: An increase in technology does not necessarily translate to an increase in productivity.

    Put another way by Robert Solow, a Nobel laureate in economics,

    “You can see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics.”

    In other words, just because our computers are getting faster, that doesn’t mean that that we will have an equivalent leap in productivity. In fact, the opposite may be true!

    New York Times writer Matt Richel wrote in an article for the paper back in 2008 that stated, “Statistical and anecdotal evidence mounts that the same technology tools that have led to improvements in productivity can be counterproductive if overused.”

    There’s a strange paradox when it comes to productivity. Rather than an exponential curve, our productivity will eventually reach a plateau, even with advances in technology.

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    So what does that mean for our personal levels of productivity? And what does this mean for our economy as a whole? Here’s what you should know about the productivity paradox, its causes, and what possible solutions we may have to combat it.

    What is the productivity paradox?

    There is a discrepancy between the investment in IT growth and the national level of productivity and productive output. The term “productivity paradox” became popularized after being used in the title of a 1993 paper by MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson, a Professor of Management at the MIT Sloan School of Management, and the Director of the MIT Center for Digital Business.

    In his paper, Brynjolfsson argued that while there doesn’t seem to be a direct, measurable correlation between improvements in IT and improvements in output, this might be more of a reflection on how productive output is measured and tracked.[1]

    He wrote in his conclusion:

    “Intangibles such as better responsiveness to customers and increased coordination with suppliers do not always increase the amount or even intrinsic quality of output, but they do help make sure it arrives at the right time, at the right place, with the right attributes for each customer.

    Just as managers look beyond “productivity” for some of the benefits of IT, so must researchers be prepared to look beyond conventional productivity measurement techniques.”

    How do we measure productivity anyway?

    And this brings up a good point. How exactly is productivity measured?

    In the case of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, productivity gain is measured as the percentage change in gross domestic product per hour of labor.

    But other publications such as US Today, argue that this is not the best way to track productivity, and instead use something called Total Factor Productivity (TFP). According to US Today, TFP “examines revenue per employee after subtracting productivity improvements that result from increases in capital assets, under the assumption that an investment in modern plants, equipment and technology automatically improves productivity.”[2]

    In other words, this method weighs productivity changes by how much improvement there is since the last time productivity stats were gathered.

    But if we can’t even agree on the best way to track productivity, then how can we know for certain if we’ve entered the productivity paradox?

    Possible causes of the productivity paradox

    Brynjolfsson argued that there are four probable causes for the paradox:

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    • Mis-measurement – The gains are real but our current measures miss them.
    • Redistribution – There are private gains, but they come at the expense of other firms and individuals, leaving little net gain.
    • Time lags – The gains take a long time to show up.
    • Mismanagement – There are no gains because of the unusual difficulties in managing IT or information itself.

    There seems to be some evidence to support the mis-measurement theory as shown above. Another promising candidate is the time lag, which is supported by the work of Paul David, an economist at Oxford University.

    According to an article in The Economist, his research has shown that productivity growth did not accelerate until 40 years after the introduction of electric power in the early 1880s.[3] This was partly because it took until 1920 for at least half of American industrial machinery to be powered by electricity.”

    Therefore, he argues, we won’t see major leaps in productivity until both the US and major global powers have all reached at least a 50% penetration rate for computer use. The US only hit that mark a decade ago, and many other countries are far behind that level of growth.

    The paradox and the recession

    The productivity paradox has another effect on the recession economy. According to Neil Irwin,[4]

    “Sky-high productivity has meant that business output has barely declined, making it less necessary to hire back laid-off workers…businesses are producing only 3 percent fewer goods and services than they were at the end of 2007, yet Americans are working nearly 10 percent fewer hours because of a mix of layoffs and cutbacks in the workweek.”

    This means that more and more companies are trying to do less with more, and that means squeezing two or three people’s worth of work from a single employee in some cases.

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    According to Irwin, “workers, frightened for their job security, squeezed more productivity out of every hour [in 2010].”

    Looking forward

    A recent article on Slate puts it all into perspective with one succinct observation:

    “Perhaps the Internet is just not as revolutionary as we think it is. Sure, people might derive endless pleasure from it—its tendency to improve people’s quality of life is undeniable. And sure, it might have revolutionized how we find, buy, and sell goods and services. But that still does not necessarily mean it is as transformative of an economy as, say, railroads were.”

    Still, Brynjolfsson argues that mismeasurement of productivity can really skew the results of people studying the paradox, perhaps more than any other factor.

    “Because you and I stopped buying CDs, the music industry has shrunk, according to revenues and GDP. But we’re not listening to less music. There’s more music consumed than before.

    On paper, the way GDP is calculated, the music industry is disappearing, but in reality it’s not disappearing. It is disappearing in revenue. It is not disappearing in terms of what you should care about, which is music.”

    Perhaps the paradox isn’t a death sentence for our productivity after all. Only time (and perhaps improved measuring techniques) will tell.

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

    Reference

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