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NFT Collab Manager's Guide to Project Partnerships: Part 2

NFT Collab Manager's Guide to Project Partnerships: Part 2
Learn how to find mentors and allies that’ll help your personal growth in Web3.

Table of Contents

Admitting you still have a lot to learn is a valuable step in seeking mentorship. You must be able to be in a position to take information from someone who is willing to distill their expertise and knowledge for your benefit. This means putting your ego aside and becoming a sponge for all of the value that is about to come your way.

Mentorship is something a lot of young professionals seek, however, once they achieve a certain status they may find themselves believing they no longer need the mentorship, because they know everything. In scientific literature this phenomenon is referred to as “The Dunning-Kruger Effect” which seeks to explain the relationship between confidence and knowledge. Often, in the beginning, individuals think they are masters of their discipline. It is only later in the learning process that they truly recognize how much there is to learn. Below is a visualization of the Dunning-Kruger effect in business.

Knowing this information, you don’t have to fall into this thought pattern. Go into a mentee role with a humble mindset to really get the most out of the relationship. Not only should you be willing to absorb information, but also be able to ask specific questions. Early on, you should seek out mentors who can address different knowledge gaps — if you have a mentor who has scaled email lists from 100 to 100,000 subscribers, they can be your go-to person for content writing, user retention, and e-commerce questions. You can seek out other mentors for other disciplines, allowing you to have seamless access to experts in each field - a true community of knowledge!.

Now that you have the right mindset for finding a mentor it is time to reach out to potential connections. This task is not as difficult as you might think. Will there be rejection? Of course there will be, but at the same time, most people are willing to pay it forward and be a mentor after receiving mentorship themselves.

One great tool is going on LinkedIn to find someone to guide you. Searching desired positions on LinkedIn is a great starting point. For example, say you are interested in a career in procurement, searching “Procurement Officer” will show people who fulfill this criteria that you have mutual connections with. Searching for the highest position in a field is the best way to find a mentor because that individual most of the time has an incredible amount of experience and to check if they do just go on their LinkedIn profile to see past experience.

Start off by connecting with a few individuals in the position you want to be in most. If those individuals connect back with you, send them a message thanking them for connecting with them. Start by thanking the individual for the connection. Then tell them your current position in your career whether it’s no experience, a student, intern or full time. Be transparent so they know how to approach you. After that notice their achievements and state how it is a position you would like to end up in at some point in your career. Finish off the message by asking for a further conversation. An example of an initial message for someone who aspires to be a lead in marketing at a company someday would be something along the lines of:

“Hello (name) thank you for connecting with me! I just started a role in marketing at a small marketing firm in New York. I noticed that you have been in the marketing industry for many years and have achieved great success in your endeavors. Would you have time to connect further in the near future?”

Once you have a conversation going through a direct message on LinkedIn ask if the individual would have anytime in the near future to meet or have a phone call for you to pick their brain. Come to this meeting prepared with questions, do not show up unprepared and waste the individuals time. Examples of questions can be:

“Where did you start your career and would you suggest that as a starting point for individuals entering the job market today to get to the level you’re at today?”

“What are the biggest challenges you have faced in your career and how did you overcome them?”

“I am at a roadblock in my career and I am not sure how to pivot from here. What do you suggest?”

These are just a few examples of questions that you can ask but they are not at all necessary to ask especially if they do not apply to you just be sure you have some questions to guide the conversation on an effective path. Individuals who have these positions typically are on a time crunch so do not ask questions for the sake of asking questions.

After the meeting, be sure to send a thank you note to the individual who took the time to talk to you about their experience. This is an opportunity to ask for these meetings to be more of a regular occurrence and turn the relationship into a mentor/mentee relationship. If they agree to be your mentor try to find regular meeting times to have with them. This can be weekly, monthly, quarterly or whatever you both see fit. Typically you will not need to meet with them often and it can be a quarterly event. These dates should be fluid as both of you are busy. Say you choose to have quarterly meetings and it’s the 1st Wednesday every four months, call your mentor a week before the scheduled meeting to be sure they are still able to meet then.

Just because the meetings may be set on certain dates doesn’t mean you cannot contact them outside of those times. Spontaneous outreach can be a great way to build community. Be sure to send them a message if you have a question or update for them that they would like to hear. These individuals who accept mentor roles do so because they want to be sure to stay in contact with them. Mentor/mentee relationships are extremely valuable for both parties and having healthy communication is key to maintaining the relationship. Be patient as with any relationship development this relationship will take time to become extremely comfortable with each other. Above everything else, be genuine in the relationship and be a sponge for knowledge!

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