When someone wants to learn a hard skill, such as a programming language, a design concept or copywriting, we talk about skill mentorship. With skill mentorship, the domain of mentoring changes: Instead of writing a few times a month, the mentor can now pose challenges, activities and little projects in order to transfer knowledge to their mentee. A mentor takes on a coach-like role.
Having a coach in your life has many advantages, including:
If you are stuck at a problem, your personal coach will always know where you are skill-wise and might even know your problem domain. In this case, help can happen quickly. Have you ever tried asking for help on StackOverflow? As a beginner, you often get unfriendly answer, asking you to provide more code, more info and in the end, your problem might not even be solved. This problem is gone with a coach.
You get immediate feedback on your work from a professional. You can find your errors quickly, iterate and therefore provide a high quality product much quicker. If you are in the process of learning a new skill or even building a product, this is valuable time that you can use to even get better.
Point of contact
Have you ever felt lost when asking for help? You don’t know who and what to ask? With a coach you will also have that point of contact. This is a game changer on an emotional level: You’ll gain confidence in yourself and your work much faster, which is not only good for your study and products, but also your career.
When teaching yourself a new skill, it can be difficult to prioritise courses, lectures and books right. A skill mentor can help you to give you your next to-dos, plan them according to your days and create a streamlined roadmap to success.
So you have successfully learned a new skill, maybe even built a product. It took months of blood, sweat and tears to get there, but now what? If your goal is to start a new career, you’ll have to prove that you can do what you are telling others. A coach can be your reference person in this scenario. If an experienced industry professional tells everyone that you can do X, people will believe it.
So where can I get a skill mentor or coach?
So glad you asked ;). On MentorCruise, you can choose between over 50 mentors in Software Engineering, Machine Learning, Design and Entrepreneurship. You’ll be able to pick a mentor of your choice — including some exciting people from Facebook, Yelp and co. — and talk to them on a regular basis. It is worth it!