Learn how to find someone who’s a good fit as a mentor. We’ll also give you some tips on writing a strong initial message to your mentor.
On the "Mentors" tab, you'll be able to browse through profile cards for potential mentors. If you see someone you think would be a good mentor for you, you can either "Favorite" them or reach out to them (depending on how your program is set up).
Below, we'll go over how to:
Don't see the Members tab? This article doesn't apply to you! You'll be matched by your site-admin and won't need to find a mentor for yourself. Go ahead and skip to this article instead.
On the Explore the Community page, you'll see profile cards for all the people who are available for you to connect with.
1. Each profile card includes basic info about the person, such as their name and headline.
2. Each profile card will also have help topics - areas that this person is interested in helping you out in.
3. Cards will include where the person currently works.
4. Profile cards also list the current location of the user.
5. To view the user's full profile, click the "Full Profile" button in the lower right.
6. When you've found someone you'd like to connect with...
Scenario 1: If you see the blue "Favorite" button, click it to let your site admins know that you'd like to be matched with this person.
Scenario 2: If you see the green "Let's Connect" button, click it to initiate the connection process.
You can narrow down your search for good connections using the search and filter options in the Filters bar on the right.
1. Enter search terms in the search box. Good search terms include: college/university names, people's names, companies, cities, and graduation years.
2. You can also use the Filters to narrow down your search. To select a filter, just open the drop down menu for the filter (2a) and select an option or input a search term.
3. You can always clear your filters and start fresh by clicking the "Clear Filters" button.
4. When you're happy with your filter setup, just click the blue "Update" button to run your search.
You can also search for potential mentors by location. A couple reasons for doing this could be that you want to connect with someone in your city, or you want to connect with someone who lives in a city you're thinking of relocating to.
To switch to map view, just click the "Map View" button in the upper right of the profile card page. You can always switch back to viewing profile cards by toggling the button back from "List View."
If you clicked the green "Let's Connect" button, you'll need to follow the steps to select your method of outreach, indicate what you're interested in talking to this person about, and propose some meeting times (if applicable). Then you'll need to compose a compelling message to your mentor - but don't worry, we've provided a handy template to get you started!
If you clicked the "Favorite" button, this step doesn't apply to you. You'll need to wait for your site admin to match you, then you'll be able to proceed directly to this step.
We've provided a template for you to work with - but we recommend customizing it to make it stand out.
A compelling message is:
- Personalized - Tell the person why you're interested in talking to them/getting their advice; what about their experience caught your eye?
- Specific - Be clear about what you're asking; for instance, if you're scheduling a meeting, make sure it's clear what you want to talk about in the meeting.
- Respectful - Don't ask for a job or treat the mentor like a resource to be exploited. Ask for advice on getting into a particular field, instead.
We'll send you a notification when you've been matched with a mentor or the mentor you reached out to responds! (You can opt in for SMS notifications or turn off all notifications here.)
You can access and reply to conversation threads from your platform inbox - access it by clicking the envelope icon in the upper right corner of your screen.
What if the person I reached out to doesn't respond?
Sometimes it happens. The person you reached out to may have overestimated their availability or ended up with an unexpectedly busy schedule. Or maybe they just forgot to check their email.
Either way, you shouldn't be discouraged! Remember, everyone who's available for connections on the platform has opted in and wants to help!
Find someone else who looks promising, and try again.
And if you're looking for some encouragement or want to get an idea of how others have successfully gone about flash mentoring, we recommend this interview with Robert Reeves on how he connected with multiple alumni for flash mentorship.