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Why Contractor Mentoring Is On The Rise

Why Contractor Mentoring Is On The Rise

While mentorship programs are already popular within permanent workplaces, offering one-on-one training that has benefits for years to come, it’s often an overlooked opportunity for those working independently.

It’s easy to see why. With the contracting market being so unpredictable and ever-changing, contractors can often fall into the trap of focusing all their attention on the here and now.  But to really craft a successful career in this industry, long term planning is key.

By investing in your professional development with larger goals in mind beyond what you can provide now, you will be able to give more to your clients, develop deeper technical or specialist skills and enjoy a more varied and fulfilling contracting career.

However traditional methods such as taking courses or reading books are becoming old hat. Instead, an increasing number of independent professionals are looking for more dynamic ways they can enrich their career, such as through contractor mentoring.

As a contractor, you might be thinking it’s hard to find a mentor. After all, if you were in permanent employment, you can look around at more senior managers for advice and guidance and find mentors directly from within your workplace. But in contrast to the abundance of options open to employees, contracting can seem somewhat lonely.

 

But fear not, as a contractor you can still connect with a mentor and enrich your professional career – follow these mentoring tips from Contracting Scout to get started.

 

Why you need a business mentor

 

Becoming an independent contractor can be overwhelming. At the end of the day you probably only have yourself to rely on and you have to think about everything else, including:

 

 

With all of these other priorities and stresses in life, you need some sort of support and advice from others who understand what you’re going through and have experience of not only doing that research but excelling at working for themselves.

But admin isn’t the only thing you’ll need guidance on. In order to make a success of contracting it’s important to get support on another major aspect of contracting too, balancing your personal and work life.

Therefore a great mentor should be someone you can bounce ideas off, someone with common sense and who understands your career challenges and aspirations.

 

The benefits of having a mentor as a contractor

 

There are so many ways having a mentor can help boost your contracting career, below are a few of the advantages:

 

Expand your experience and make fewer mistakes

 

You should look for a business mentor who fully understands your line of work as a contractor and ultimately, someone you have respect for. By having been in your position before they can give you tried and tested advice on how to make your business processes more efficient and share with you any situations that went wrong so you don’t have to learn the hard way.

 

Use your mentor as a sounding board

 

As an independent contractor, you probably won’t be working closely with anyone else on the day-to-day aspects of running your business. You will be making vital decisions which will impact your livelihood, and might sometimes wish you had someone to bounce ideas off or cross check things with.

 

This is where a mentor can come in. Having someone with a fresh perspective and who is a bit of an “outsider” to your business can play a devil’s advocate to challenge your ideas or be a much needed voice of reason providing you with an informed and unique point of view that you may not have considered.

 

Expand your network and get more opportunities

 

Successful contractors really have to put themselves out there in order to get new contract opportunities and sometimes those contracts cannot come quickly enough. By finding a business mentor that has already spent time building an extensive network of contacts, you may be fortunate enough to piggyback off their already established connections in order to find your next contract.

Even if your mentor has clients in different industries to you, you still never know where meeting a new person will take you. Simply giving out your business card could lead to making a useful acquaintance or collaborator or even gaining a new client.

 

Summary: What a business mentor can do for you

 

Despite being something that rarely gets attention, finding a mentor can be a great way to help take your contracting career to the next level. Finding the right mentor is a contracting must for numerous reasons:

 

  • A mentor can give you the perspective of an outsider
  • They will listen to your concerns about your business in confidence and from an informed perspective
  • They will be able to provide you with friendly support and guidance
  • Or they could give you constructive criticism if you need to face some home truths
  • A mentor will make suggestions on how to network and can introduce you to useful contacts
  • They might also encourage you to make the right decisions and give you motivation
  • Or they could highlight where there might be ethical conflicts
  • A mentor will point you in the direction of where to go for professional advice and additional services to help support your business.

 

Next steps – grow your contracting career with Contracting Scout

 

By seeking out a business mentor for your independent contractor business you could really learn how to build your career. Here at Contracting Scout, we have the experience, network and access to providers you need to get the most out of contracting. For information and support from people who know the contractor industry, contact Contracting Scout now.

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