All entrepreneurs face countless challenges (we always want to use the word “countless” in this phrase). Before starting, you have to convince yourself of the business idea, convince the cofounders, convince the providers, users, clients. Convince, convinve, convince.
With time, good entrepreneurs turn into professional “convincers”; their survival depends on it.
Today, few dispute the value of a good mentor. A good mentor is someone with relevant experience and the desire to help others that makes themselves available to meet periodically with entrepreneurs. Our model at NXTP has a very strong component based on mentors and in the value that they bring entrepreneurs of our portfolio.
We have helped hundreds of entrepreneurs connect with mentors. We have seen novice entrepreneurs grow with great mentors. In many cases these relationships last a long time, and even include forming partnerships to start a business together.
If we have learned anything in this process, it is that for many entrepreneurs, listening is a huge challenge. It is very hard for them to leave the “convincing” mode and change to “listening” mode. Of course, they believe they have to impress their mentors and therefore, put energy into demonstrating what they know, instead of admitting that they don’t know something, and listening.
To grow and to learn, it is necessary to remember that we do not know everything, to be open to listening to other opinions, and to know how to turn off the “convincer” that all entrepreneurs put forward.
This post was orginially published on LatAm.VC