Imagine you approached someone you admired in the art world, and boldly asked that person to mentor you. And the answer was “Yes!”
Since the art world can be a tough industry to break into, having a mentor share the secrets to their success and the stories of their career path can be extremely beneficial. But now you are probably wondering what are the most valuable questions to ask that mentor to help you on your career path?
First off, congrats on finding a mentor! Mentorship is a scare resource that not all have access to. That means when you find a mentor, you must ask engaging questions. And every question you ask, ideally, creates value on both sides.
Common topics mentees seek to work on with their mentors often include themes such as work/life balance, learning organizational culture, communication skills, leadership skills, networking, and management skills.
To give you a nudge in the right direction here is a list of 15 powerful and engaging questions to start you off.
- Ask your mentor to tell you a story from their career, this is a great way to break the ice.
- What do you wish you had known when you were starting out?
- How do you make yourself happy in your current role/industry?
- Did you have a mentor at some point in your career? If so, how did s/he help you? If not, why did you never seek one out?
- Would you do anything differently if given the opportunity?
- How and where do you find inspiration?
- How do you keep your feelings separate from your decision-making?
- What values are you committed to?
- Have you ever you messed up and felt like you’d failed? How did you bounce back?
- Was there ever a role you applied for and landed, but weren’t 100% qualified to do? How did you proceed?
- If you have brought along a cv or portfolio, ask for feedback for better self-awareness.
- What new skills do I need to move ahead?
- How do you balance your work and home life?
- Do you have any books that you would suggest I read? Or courses you think would enhance my career?
- Who else would you recommend I meet?
During the meeting remember to take notes! Afterwards, ask yourself what you learned from the meeting and how you can apply your new knowledge. And lastly don’t forget to thank your mentor for their advice with an email or personalized note.
All images from the ww club Instagram