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A mentoring service can refer to a variety of things. Universities and high schools, for instance may offer mentoring services to college students who either have special requirements, or who are planning to embark in a specific profession. Teachers may be helped by special mentoring programs which pair new teachers with experienced ones in order to help new teachers be more effective in the classroom and overcome any problems encountered. People training to become marriage and family therapists frequently pair with mentors or fully credentialed professionals to help meet their service hours requirement.
In business and industry, a mentoring service may refer to a professional agency that gives advice to a business that is beginning, or undergoing various transitions. Often a single person or team from the business meets with a professional counselor, or entrepreneur who acts as a sounding board for ideas, offers advice, and helps the business come up with new ideas that may help improve the company. There are several companies that call themselves a mentoring service or offer mentoring service for a fee.
In other circumstances, new business owners or developers may be able to take advantage of a variety of free mentoring service opportunities. For instance, many professional retirees work diligently to offer advice on finance, legal issues, corporate issues and the running of companies to people who are new to the job. You may be able to find such services through volunteer agencies in your community, or you can contact the American Association of Retired People (AARP) to see if they keep a list of such services in your community. Another source of often free mentoring service is through trade organizations, unions, and professional organizations. People new to a certain trade or profession may want to contact these organizations to see if they might have individual mentoring available.
Sometimes when you’re attempting to learn how to compete in a new field, or learn more about the way your business operates, you can ask people if they would mentor you. For instance, if you're learning to work as a professional writer, there isn’t anything wrong with asking another writer you know who is successful to mentor you. They may say no: good advice is to aim low instead of high. Don’t expect Stephen King to mentor you if you have an “idea” for a horror novel. On the other hand, if you read the work of a writer in several publications you respect, it’s fine to contact that person and ask if they would be willing to casually mentor you.
Another way in which a mentoring service may work is by offering professional counseling to employees of a business in order to help individuals further their career. Organizational psychologists, a career counselor, or a licensed therapist may give business counseling or trade counseling. A few sessions of counseling of this type can help a person figure out how to develop and direct their career within a company or outside of it, and this type of counseling is usually private, which means if you hold a negative view of your work environment it won’t get back to your employers.
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