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    #2013alive: Have You Ever Had (or Been) a Mentor?

    #2013alive: Have You Ever Had (or Been) a Mentor?

    A role model or mentor can be an important ingredient to success if you’re planning a change in your life. Has a mentor made a difference in your life?

    It’s month 4, week 3 of our 12 Months of Wellness. This week we’re looking for someone to act as a mentor—someone we can look up to for guidance and advice.

    When we’re trying to make a change in our lives, it’s useful to have someone along to guide us—a role model we can look up to, ask questions of, and who’ll give us much-needed advice along the way.

    Commonly, mentors are associated with a new job or career path, but it doesn’t have to be confined to work. You could be considering a new pursuit, such as punk rock star or base jumping. In either case, a good mentor is a really good idea. A mentor can answer questions (like “will my insurance cover me?”) and help get you started. Most importantly, a good mentor can help you to succeed in your new pursuit.

    Some of us at alive have experienced the guiding help of a mentor—both in work situations as well as in personal situations. And some of us have been honoured to be a mentor to someone else.

    Ryan Benn, Publisher: I believe so passionately in having many mentors. I feel my parents, my wife and kids, and my coworkers are all mentors.

    But in the classic sense, I really have two mentors. When I first joined alive, I reached out to Darren Entwistle (CEO of Telus). He put me in touch with Josh Blair, who is the EVP of HR. Since that time, Josh and I get together once every couple of months or so, and he always answers the phone when I need him. Josh’s role has grown at Telus, and he has tremendous pressures, but somehow he always makes time for me.

    More recently, at the end of 2011, I joined a mentorship organization called YPO (Young Presidents’ Organization). YPO is a group of like-minded individuals who confidentially share experiences and lend each other best practices in addition to always being available for each other. The support is broken down into business, personal, and family.

    Vince Yim, Digital Content Coordinator: Several years ago, I was a mentor for the Vancouver School Board’s (VSB) Making Contact mentorship program, which pairs up elementary school children (grades 4 to 7) with experts in interests that may not be covered in the classroom at that level, such as computer animation, marine biology, or automotive mechanics. I was able to share my own experiences with one student who had an interest in Rubik’s Cubes and similar puzzles, and was able to help him along.

    The experience gave me a chance to give back to the community in general as well as improve my communication skills. (For more information about the VSB mentorship program, go to

    Bronwyn Logan, Marketing and Digital Communications Specialist: I have two different mentors, really. The first is Rick Kroetsch alive>, who has helped guide me through school into my career and always makes time to help me with tough decisions.

    The other is really a couple that Cody and I have connected with who have helped us with our finances, family, marriage, and many other areas in our lives. We are so lucky to have these significant people in our lives to help us with tough decisions; they always take the time to love and guide us.

    Bryce Tarling, Editorial Assistant: I had a guitar teacher once, whom I still look up to. He taught me a lot about music, obviously, but he was also very inspirational in the way he lived his life. He lived for music, always knew he wanted to be a musician. His job requires a lot of work in terms of practising his instrument and his dedication to his students, but he spends his days doing something he loves. I’ll never be a professional musician, but working with him made me think a lot about the kind of life I wanted to live, and what it would look like to make that happen.

    Have you ever had (or been) a mentor?

    Have you made a life change or chosen a new path recently? Did you find a friend or someone with experience in your new pursuit to help you along the path to success? How did it work out? Or did you act as a mentor to someone else? We’d love to hear about it. Drop us a line via blog posts or Facebook comments, or by using the Twitter hashtag #2013alive.


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