It took me a few years to want a mentor. Up until 2014, Google was my mentor and the thought of spending money I didn’t have on 1 on 1 education seemed like a Luxury with a capital L. Besides that, I had viewed several people as mentors throughout my journey; people I had 2nd shot weddings for, people I had gone to seminars to listen to, people who had offered amazing advice through Facebook groups. I didn’t want a mentor until I saw Taryn speak at a local photographers’ meetup.
She was bright and vocal and full of energy. On top of that, she was somehow concrete. Her no’s meant no and her yes’s meant yes. She had an answer for everything in her business and an answer for everything in your business. She talked for an hour on the topic of sales and made no apologies. To me, sales had always been a four letter word. It’s the thing I’m the worst at. When it comes to asking people to give me money, I freeze. But if I was going to be a business owner, I would have to face that fact one day and who better to teach me how to do that than this woman who not only doesn’t shy away from sales, but who was passionate about it?
After the meeting, I approached her and thanked her. I was too nervous to ask about her mentorship costs because I was afraid she might hit me with a four thousand dollar price tag and I would have to fake that awkward moment… the one where you’re in the store and the sales associate gives you a price way out of your range and to save face you act like you’re actually considering it. So instead of risk that happening, I sent her an email the next day.
A week later I was in Taryn’s studio in downtown Mesa (a space I would later rent with her and to this day, we are office roomies) taking notes faster than my hand would allow. She listened to my fears, she gave me permission to be confident, she followed up with me over several months, and later met up with me again to go over the steps I had taken since our last meeting.
When I think about mentorship in my business, Taryn always comes to mind first. She’s my “official” mentor. She’s the one that’s in my corner, cheering me on. If you’re at the point in your business where you want a mentor, these are my five pieces of advice:
As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments. Are you looking for your own mentor right now? Has the thought never crossed your mind? Have you had success already with a mentorship in your business? Let me know and I’ll see you tomorrow for day 11/100: The Power of a Thank You Card.
Day 98 is currently reserved for any questions you have throughout the next 100 days. To submit a question, please click here! If you’re interested in supporting this project, please share, PIN and comment! Any other questions, comments or ideas, please feel free to email me at denise(at)denisekaris(dot)com
|Denise Karis is an Arizona photographer who enjoys musicals, Doctor Who and breakfast burritos. IG @denisekaris|
Hey. Do you mind if I tell you a story? One you might not have heard. All the elements in your body were forged many many millions of years ago in the heart of a faraway star that exploded and died. That explosion scattered those elements across the desolations of deep space. After so, so many millions of years, these elements came together to form new stars and new planets. And on and on it went. The elements came together and burst apart, forming shoes and ships and sealing wax and cabbages and kings. Until, eventually, they came together to make you. You are unique in the universe. There is only one of you. And there will never be another.