The Joys of Mentoring
I have been very lucky to have a mentor in almost every job I had. And they have been really wonderful mentors. The first person who mentored me was Mr Ranjan Kaul at Sage Publications. He was a graduate of IIT Kanpur, a positive person and the right hand of the CEO Mr Tejeshwar Singh (well known DD anchor).
Then I joined Sahara TV. At least 50 % of what I am today I have learnt at Sahara and most of it from one single man, Mr Shailendra Verma. He is just 10 years older to me but I touch his feet with genuine respect every time I meet him. Sometimes when your personal life is going through crisis, a mentor is one person, with whom you can share your struggles and sorrows.
Next I was in ICFAI and Air Vice Marshal Mr Gurunathan mentored me. At 62 he had more energy than many colleagues half his age. Three months back, I shared a glass of beer with him at Madras Gymkhana Club. Frequently I have this urge to give him a call, listen to his powerful voice and I can actually visualise his aura.
And there have been mentors with shorter associations. Col Suni Prem at WLC is somebody I would always miss. A wonderful trainer with the most powerful voice I have ever heard in my life (except in films), he was a dream mentor.
My mentors have touched my lives in so many ways. And mentor- mentee is the only relationship in office with an emotional touch. Otherwise office is all about allies and enemies, not a place for emotional fooling around.
I started mentoring my students in 2004 without much success, as one thing or another came in the way. I mentored an emotionally weak student in 2008 successfully but with lot of time constraints. Like we all have maternal/paternal instincts, I think we also have mentoring instincts at certain age. One tends to enjoy the process of giving with the only expectations being gratitude, loyalty and respect.
I feel it’s only recently I have become competent enough to mentor someone and actually now only am I mentoring someone in the real sense of the term. One sentence which my mentee wrote to me really touched me “I have started taking things in a very positive manner, and I must thank you for this change. Earlier I used to crib a lot about things but from past few days I am finding certain changes in me. I am more happy and satisfied person” That’s what mentors are for. Seems like going back to the traditional Guru Shishya parampara (teacher student tradition).
Dr Amit Nagpal is a Life Skills Trainer, Life Coach and Inspirational Speaker. To know more about him click here
He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org