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The best mentors don't have the answers......

Discussion in 'Investor Psychology' started by keithj, 7th Mar, 2016.

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  1. keithj

    keithj Moderator Staff Member

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    Following on from Is having a mentor important?

    The best mentors don't have the answers, they only have the questions. No-one can never have your answer to the questions, a mentor can only have their answers to their own questions. Only you can have the best answer for you - it’s you who has to live with your answers.

    All a good mentor can do is stimulate your mindset into you finding your best answer to the right questions. The mentors job is to help you to find the right questions, and then steer you towards answering them for yourself. They teach you to think for yourself. They shouldn't force their style onto you, they should adapt to your style.

    Some feel that being a mentor requires special skills. Not really... mentors are simply people who have many of the qualities of good role models.

    Critically important attributes are being practical (rather than theoretical), being a good listener and also a critical thinker A 'nice to have' is at least some experience in your field and ideally has achieved success there too, but success in different or a broader range of areas is often equally advantageous - the principles are often the same. Also high on the list is 2nd level thinking or second round effects, and the ability to consider issues from several aspects - the ability to see the bigger picture. Useful attributes include strong practical knowledge of statistics & probabilities, and also of cognitive biases, with a bit of macro economics.

    When you link up with a mentor, you're getting the benefit of their breadth of experience, their successes and equally important their failures. It's more about the why type of questions and what else than the how. A developing/options/shares/whatever course will teach you the specifics of how, but breadth of knowledge about how it fits into your bigger picture is what a mentor can bring to the table.

    And a mentor shouldn't be offering advice - legal, financial or otherwise. A mentor cannot be responsible for the decisions you make. If you need advice they should point you towards a selection of arms length professionals - accountants or BAs or brokers, financial advisers, etc.

    You don't know what you don't know - a mentor will steer you towards areas of researching that will make your of unconscious/conscious incompetence a lot smaller. And they will also play devils advocate... but in a positive way rather than the genuinely incompetent naysayers. A broad range of other opinions (such as those found on PC) will often achieve a similar effect, but a downside is none of those opinions knows as much about your personal circumstances and existing experiences and biases as your mentor probably should.



    And if your 'mentor' ever tries to sell you anything,,,,,

    In contrast, spruikers have the answers, but unfortunately they also provide the questions... and the questions are the right questions for them, not necessarily the right ones for you. A genuine mentor will NEVER try to sell you anything - the questions the spruikers ask are always answered by whatever they happen to be selling.... even if it's discounted to only $2996.
     
  2. luckystar

    luckystar Well-Known Member

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    Everybody wants some comfort to their uncertainties, which is why we seek out answers on a daily basis both consciously and unconsciously, I think this why facebook is so popular as it can provide some artificial relief to the nagging mind, simply post your problems and then before you know it 100 people like it and it makes you feel good but doesn't solve the problem. Best to just man up and get on with it IMO
     
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  3. Leo2413

    Leo2413 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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  4. Rolf Latham

    Rolf Latham Inciteful (sic) Staff Member Business Plus Member

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    The best mentors dont have the answers - the mentee does..........................

    ta
    rolf
     
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  5. willair

    willair Well-Known Member Premium Member

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  6. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    There are NO answers. Even when you think you have the right answers, you actually don't.
     
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  7. pinkboy

    pinkboy Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    So whenever you (or anyone else) posts a factual statement, or an answer to a question in any thread - we can refer this quote as gospel? That "There are NO answers. Even when you think you have the right answers, you actually don't."

    Quoted for future forever reference.

    pinkboy
     
  8. Tim & Chrissy

    Tim & Chrissy Well-Known Member

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    This is getting very philosophical...

    Just to bring it back a bit to what a mentor actually is:

    Screenshot_2016-03-07-17-41-19-1.png
     
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  9. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    mentors/advisors/motivationers or whatever you want to call it are so overrated

    whether it be life/business/family/personal , you need a combination of skills/talent/good luck/acumen/hard work, to make it all come together

    in fact Id put a mentor in the bottom half of importance,

    you wont see me on the cat walk strutting my stuff no matter how hard I try or how much plastic surgery I do, and no mentor is going to change that
     
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  10. Tim & Chrissy

    Tim & Chrissy Well-Known Member

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    Bad news @bob shovel

    No PChat catwalk anytime in the near future :p
     
    Last edited: 13th Mar, 2016
  11. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    I'll keep strutting my stuff anyway
     
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  12. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    maybe for halloween!

    I can be the poster boy!

    no fee required
     
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  13. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    LOL
    So true...you really hit the nail on the head here.

    Many don't understand you need to be your own mentor....and that only you can find the answers.

    I believe It's about continually learning, resilience, patience, never giving up, it's about finding solutions and tweaking it. A mentor can only give you their spin on it which could be a major disadvantage, but you won't know this


    How I dislike the word MENTOR:(


    MTR:)
     
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  14. Azazel

    Azazel Well-Known Member

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  15. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    I think in todays world of self entitlement and wanting things right now
    add to that reality tv and social media

    people want an easy one stop solution to their ventures in life, ie lets get a mentor in and they will do all the hard work

    oops... im starting to sound like an old fart
     
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  16. Azazel

    Azazel Well-Known Member

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    Starting? ;)
     
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  17. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    Im hurt by that comment....

    Im going to make myself feel better

    /off to call grandma!
     
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  18. Kate Moloney

    Kate Moloney Well-Known Member

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    Great post Keith and agree with all of it. Wish I could have read these wise words 7 years ago before we got sucked in ...

    A true mentor will let the mentee have their own journey, rather than cajoling them into what the mentor thinks is best (unfortunately some mentors promote strategies that line the mentors pocket through commissions etc)

    No one, not even a mentor, has the right to know what's best for another person... Self leadership is the key to thriving.
     
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  19. Marg4000

    Marg4000 Well-Known Member

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    Luckily for us, we did most of our investing before the idea of a mentor arose. After a while there were some books, including the first one of Jan Somers. Final decision was up to the local bank manager, who had the sole discretion as to whether we got the loan. BTW, our first investment loan was at 16%!
    Marg