A graduation announcement just arrived from my cousin. Her son, who I still think of with chubby baby cheeks, is on his way to college. I know I am dating myself, but he was born when I was in college! Senior year, my roommate and I traveled to California to meet him when he was 10 months old. We then traveled up the coast from San Diego to San Francisco. It’s a trip we still talk about to this day.
When you are in the thick of school or work, you sometimes forget why or how you became involved in activities or why you decided to join that team or volunteer. My junior year, I was nicely coerced to be the President for the Council for Advancing Student Leadership at Indiana University. It was a fairly new program and my boss at the IU Tennis Center recommended me for the position. I found confidence in the role, routine, a sense of belonging, and we had fun along the way paving new opportunities for students at IU.
I took the lead on creating a Mentor Program – we set up students on the Council with business leaders, educators, and coaches. This, I realize now, was a passion that I am still chasing. My work at Purple Ink includes continually finding ways and opportunities for people to connect, create efficiencies in processes and engagement in the workforce. Isn’t a mentorship program simply trying to let someone be heard and having two people be accountable to each other? That is really all we want in life and what we try to build within organizations.
“A great mentor is someone who offers objective advice, provides counsel from a fresh perspective, is willing to collaborate, listen and learn, as well as helping you stay focused on your goals, your purpose and what you’re working so hard to achieve,” notes Amy Zimmerman, Head of People Operations at Kabbage.
Oftentimes, clients don’t have a budget for training, onboarding, engagement – I without a doubt would recommend setting up a mentor program. It doesn’t have to cost anything (unless you let them go out to lunch on your dime!) and the confidence and positive energy generated from allowing two people to connect on work, home, and hobby life will speak volumes.
Finding your joy can take a lifetime, but I’d bet most of us found it growing up. It just might take some time and reflection to realize how we’ve used our JoyPower throughout life. Congrats to all the new grads and may you choose joy in every step of your journey!