Having a business mentor is a great way to learn the ins and outs of starting a small business. They can help you write a business plan, learn about inventory if you’re going into a retail business, and inform you about the licenses and permits you will need to operate.
However, if you’re going into a business that’s in the tech industry, how can a mentor help you and where do you find one? Keep reading to find out how to find a tech mentor to help you with a startup.
Advice on Funding
Tech mentors can give potential startups advice on almost anything they need to get their company off the ground. Some of the most important advice will be about finding funding for your startup.
While there are many traditional financial resources to get money from, an advisor can teach you how to finance your small business when those resources are not available to you.
They can also give you advice about hiring an accountant and attorney to help with the legal and daily financial aspects of your new business. They may have resources and recommendations for you.
Writing a Business Plan
A crucial document that you’ll need to have is a business plan. Every business needs one, no matter how large or small it will be. A business plan gives others a view of your vision and it helps business owners focus on the goals they’ve set for themselves.
If you have a mentor, ask to read their business plan. It is always a good idea to look at a plan that received funding for a successful company. You can always add or subtract from it, tailoring the plan to your needs.
Finding a Mentor
One of the best ways to find a tech mentor is by knowing others. You’ve probably heard the adage, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Well, when it comes to finding a mentor, it is true.
To meet others with similar interests, join local organizations like the Rotary club, business associations, or tech groups, and attend their meetings. Network with other members and you’re going to come across business owners and entrepreneurs.
Be honest with your intentions and you may meet someone willing to mentor you or at least answer some questions.
Provide Market Introductions
Mentors are great resources and most successful startups and CEOs are mentored. For instance, Mark Zuckerberg cites Steve Jobs as an invaluable mentor to him, and his success with Facebook is common knowledge.
A mentor will have the right connections to get your product or service to the market. They may know people interested in fully funding your project or buying what you are selling.
By developing a good relationship with a mentor, you will have access to years of knowledge of the industry that it would take years for you to acquire on your own.
If you don’t know many people within the industry, start going to tech meetups. Find hackathons or business communities with a focus on tech and regularly attend their meetings. By building a presence, people will see your interest in the industry and start networking with you.