The 5 types of mentors you need in your life

By Mai Alowaish posted 07-07-2020 05:01 PM


As I read an article in TED website about the 5 mentors you need in your life, I thought of all the analytics mentors in the past 5 years of my career and how each one represented one of those mentor types, and many of those great mentors are here in the DAA community so I wanted to mention them and invite everyone to mention their mentors that made an impact in their career. 

I have to say that I did not have a direct “mentoring relationship” with many of the mentors I listed below, but getting involved in the DAA community automatically formed the mentoring experience. If you don’t have a lot of connections here, the DAA Mentoring Program offers the chance to look up and directly connect with a mentor and have a formal mentoring relationship, that I am sure will open up new opportunities to connect with other mentors! 

The article defines the 5 mentors as:

Mentor #1: The Master of Craft

This person can function as your personal Jedi master, someone who’s accumulated their wisdom through years of experience and who can provide insight into your industry and fine-tuning your skills.

@Joe Christopher is the master of Craft mentor whom I learned  (and still learn) a lot from whether it’s analytics concepts, best practices, latest platforms and much more! I always look out for a blogpost from him as those encompass many years of experience and knowledge.

Mentor #2: The Champion of your Cause

These are people who are advocates and who have your back. But they’re more than just boosters — often, they can be connectors too, introducing you to useful people in your industry.

@Jim Sterne & @Alex Yastrebenetsky are my champions, and I can not thank them enough for all the opportunities that I got because of their mentions, I always say the best leaders are those who enable others, and this is something Alex and Jim do every day, making an impact on a lot of us in the analytics industry. 

Mentor #3: The Copilot
Your best work bud. The copilot is the colleague who can talk you through projects, advise you in navigating the personalities at your company

@Amin Shawki has been my closest mentor and co-pilot with every analytics challenge that I had in the past year. Based on my experience and the different co-pilots that I had, I think it can be with a direct manager who's heavily involved in your projects, or between peers who are committed to supporting each other. 

Mentor #4: The Anchor

 While your champion supports you to achieve specific career goals, your anchor is a confidante and a sounding board. This person doesn’t have to work in your industry — in fact, it could be a friend or family member.

Those were some of my family members (that some of you saw on the big screen in the last Quanties party) that definitely listened to lots of analytics stories although they’re not analysts! Sarah & Maryam . 

Mentor #5: The Reverse Mentor

Talking to mentees gives the opportunity to collect feedback on leadership style, engage with the younger generation, and keep my perspectives fresh and relevant.

@Barbara Kalicki and @Andreia Benites are amazing mentees that I continuously enjoy mentoring. They helped me grow into an informed leader as I learned that sometimes, a teacher becomes a student! 

Enjoy reading the article and mention some of your mentors here! 




07-14-2020 11:32 PM

Nice! I am very thankful for the mentors that have helped me through the DAA. How did I build my relationships? Starting at zero can surely be intimidating. As @Mai Alowaish suggested, I started with the DAA mentorship program. This was fantastic and would highly recommend it. As the program came to an end, I wanted to be conscious of my mentor's time, yet still stay in touch. Since we were on complete opposite ends of the country, it would be a rare occurrence to naturally cross paths. My solution was to ask if she/he would mind if I touched based every 6 months for 30 minutes.

This was the gateway question to what is now my closest network of 6-12 amazing people. Why 6-12 people? Well this means you will have 1 or 2 wicked smart people to touch base with every month for personal guidance. The cool thing is having 6 months between calls really gives enough time for each of you to be up to something new each time you talk, while at the same time is frequent enough to continue building deep personal connections. 

What I also like about this strategy is that it forces you to choose your 'slots' wisely. When you cross paths with that right person to invite into your inner circle, you can politely ask them for 1 hour of their time per year through two 30-minute calls.

"Joe I really enjoyed our discussion today and would like to stay in touch. I have a small list of people I like to check in with every 6 months for 30 minute calls. Would you mind if I add you to that list and reach out to you in 6 months? I believe that would be January"

​This has helped me tremendously and I want to hit the point again that this really helps build deep connections beyond what data can measure! I have been doing this for over 2 years and happy to say there have been no unsubscribes 🥳

07-07-2020 06:01 PM

Mai, I am happy to connect you to anyone, anywhere, at any time. Introducing you to people makes me look super smart - it's a life-hack I thoroughly enjoy!

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