Step 2: Searching for the One
By now you're probably going down a mental list of everyone you know trying to figure out if they'll be good career mentors. Fantastic, that's a great place to start finding one. But, it's not the only way.
Look for Them at Work
When it comes to finding the perfect career mentor, you should start at your workplace. Look around and ask yourself if any of your peers could become a mentor. Depending on the style of mentor you chose on the previous step, your pool of candidates at work will range from your coworkers to your supervisor, or even the CEO.
Scout for Them at Events
If you want to look beyond the walls of your office, then you have to be more creative. Attend local networking events or conferences with speakers you admire. While these leaders might seem unattainable right now, you'll be surprised how many of them actually offer mentorship programs. Drop the fear and sign up for these events — you never know unless you try.
Take the Online Route
For the introverts out there, don't despair, you can still find a mentor online. With programs such as LinkedIn Career Advice, you can seek career advice from industry leaders on demand. Let LinkedIn do the hard work for you, and enjoy all the benefits of receiving valuable input from quality mentors out there. Or, take to the hashtags! Search for topics from your field, and identify people who are providing thought leadership.
If you can't find a mentor organically, then you may be able to contract a professional mentor. Many industry leaders, often retired ones, offer formal mentorship programs to help people like you and me on their career path. Through these programs, you have scheduled meetings, assignments, and access to not only their knowledge, but also their contacts -- which are just as valuable. While the investment may be a barrier to entry, these programs are often quite fruitful and more structured than a relationship you may develop through your own network.