How do you find advisors?

I recently spoke with a friend about a book that she read called Life Entrepreneurs, by Christopher Gergen. One of the suggestions in the book is creating a "personal board of directors," a group of people who know you well and are willing to help you keep on track of personal development as an innovator. I realized that a lot of my advisors only help me with specific projects that I work on, and I don't have as many people to go to if I am trying to decide if a life or career decision will help me fulfill my potential as a changemaker. How do you find these sorts of advisors, and how do you engage them over time? 
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I imagine there are more ways than we can imagine to find advisors, especially those that walk with us through our entire life. One of my greatest advisors came to me a bit unexpectedly while I was only a teenager. She was my high school teacher, but quickly became a life mentor that inspires, guides, challenges, and bewilders me to this day. While still my top advisor, I also consider her one of my greatest friends.

Answered over 2 years ago jay g 131 2 from United States


I think Jay is right that mentorship can come through myriad different avenues. There are the unexpected opportunities that arise from a chance encounter, like sauntering over to a beach fire at dawn or getting beignets alone at 4 A.M., and then there are the relationships you actively pursue and cultivate. As long as you maintain a positive, aware and inventive mind frame you will be able to capitalize on those random opportunities. When it comes to cultivating mentor relationships I’ve always followed a pretty simple formula: Do free work. Everyone has something they need help with, and by initially creating value for someone else, it is easier to ask them for advice or investment in you later. You might start a relationship by asking to hear more about the projects someone is working on. Then find a small piece of their work you could do without them spending a long time instructing you before you get started. Then do an amazing job. Everyone needs help with something, whether it’s moving into a new apartment, watching their dog, or indexing their new book. This is a nice organ way to develop an increasingly meaningful relationship. By starting with smaller less important interactions you also gain the opportunity to see how well you work together. Some brilliant people are cruel!

What techniques have you been using so far? 

Answered over 2 years ago tallybower 289 3 from United States
over 2 years ago laura_white said:

Thanks! I have been asking people who I consistently work with on various projects. I would say that I have two “life” advisors right now, but since I’m graduating and moving to a new city, I want to figure out how to meet more and how to keep engaged with the ones I have now.