Where Credit's Due

Trend Watch

For years, mentoring has been a hot topic in the small-business world--one that doesn't show any signs of cooling, either. And why should it? The mentor/protégé relationship allows both the teacher and the student to prosper. In the competitive world of small business, every edge entrepreneurs can get--including gleaning knowledge from another's experience--can help their businesses survive.

Recent books on mentoring are plentiful; each of the following takes a unique approach to the subject of mentoring, extolling its virtues and benefits.

  • Mentoring: A Success Guide for Mentors and Protégés, by Terri Sjodin and Floyd Wickman (Irwin/McGraw-Hill, $24.95, 800-2-MCGRAW). Mentors can help protégés find multiple solutions to common business problems. Says Sjodin: "If you can't get in the front door, your mentor will help you crawl through a window."
  • The Mentor: 15 Keys to Success in Sales, Business and Life, by Jack Carew (Donald I. Fine Books, $19.95, 800-526-0275). In a dramatic narrative, Carew's sage-like "Mentor" character shares 15 essential business "lessons of a lifetime" with two young protégés. More inspirational than instructional, Carew's tale reminds us of the wisdom that comes from having been there.
  • Coaching, Mentoring and Managing: Breakthrough Strategies to Solve Performance Problems and Build Winning Teams, by William Hendricks (Career Press, $16.99, 800-CAREER-1). Written for mentors, this book encourages teachers to impart their wisdom using hands-on instruction. Hendricks is a believer in the "10-60-90" principle: "Adults will remember 10 percent of what they hear, 60 percent of what they see and 90 percent of what they do."

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This article was originally published in the January 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Where Credit's Due.

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