Simone worked as a successful lawyer before becoming an entrepreneur by setting up her own B2B publishing company Brummsbooks. Thereafter, a Simone worked as a successful lawyer before becoming an entrepreneur by setting up her own B2B publishing company Brummsbooks. Thereafter, as co-owner and managing director of IENS (www.iens.nl), she developed this start-up into the no. 1 user generated content database publisher of restaurant guides in The Netherlands. With the Europeanmuseumguide.com, she intends to do the same. She works with Linde Wolters on a book about Female Internet Heroes and launches www.thenextwomen.com.
Some weeks ago I called for mentors to help founder Chloe Holding with her online bikini site Habinki. I received numerous replies of experienced entrepreneurs. Some via blog comments, like Mike Butcher from TechCrunch UK, others via email. I wondered how Chloe had managed so I decided to ask here how she experienced the whole mentorship process.
How did you find the response for the request for a mentor?
“I found the mentoring trial interesting, but also incredibly time consuming and I have found it hard juggling a lot of priorities at the moment.”
What did you get from the mentorship till now?
“I think that one gaines a lot of experience and information from every conversation that one has. Certainly just hearing about people out there who have done something similar and lived to tell the tale is incredibly valuable. I certainly enjoyed hearing about other entrepreneurs and the businesses they have managed to establish.”
Are you in contact? How, by phone, text or in person?
“I do think is that to build a lasting relationship you need to meet people and connect with them on a personal level. So I don’t know if I will keep in touch regularly with any of the mentors that I emailed, although I would definitely keep in touch now and again when I wanted to seek some advice or if I encountered a problem in the field of expertise that they were specializing in.”
Did you chose a definite mentor?
“On a more philosophical note the process taught me that finding a mentor is not as easy as I had thought. You need to find someone that you relate to on a deeply personal level, who has come from a similar background as you and has been motivated for similar reasons as you have and has overcome the problems that you find the most challenging. You also need to find someone that you genuinely admire and respect for what they have done and want to emulate and I think that is very hard when you have not met the person and are not familiar with their achievements.
I suppose if I had found someone that had set up their own fashion or lifestyle brand that I knew of that I would have felt more inspired, but perhaps these people are too busy!”
Can you recommend it?
“Anyway, I did enjoy the process and really appreciate being able to be involved – it has taught me a lot!”
Note: There are some 10 mentors who have indicated that they want to mentor startups, leave a comment if you want to get in touch.
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