4 Traits to Look for in a Career Mentor

North Alabama Chapter

Jay Hicks is an author, instructor and consultant with over 30 years of business and government planning and leadership. He advises commercial and federal organizations on the planning, development and leadership of project management organizations, delivering viability and value. With a special kinship for military personnel, Jay provides guidance on successful civilian career transition. He is the co-founder of Gr8Transtions4U.com, where advocating the value of hiring military personnel is the key focus.


Topics: Career Development

To find a great mentor will take work and effort on your part. However, the payoff is priceless. Do you have a career mentor? We often speak of mentorship in the military. As you begin your military transition journey or continue your career, having a mentor is a critical factor in finding a great job in your desired career field. You may have someone you think is a great mentor for your military transition, but how do you know if they will be able to provide transition assistance and guidance? 

Before you begin your search, take some time to think about what you are trying to acquire from a career mentor. Here are a few thoughts….

1. You need to find someone who is honest and cares about you. This can be intimidating. Realize this is going to be an intimate relationship, as the mentor needs to know your strengths and weaknesses. They must be willing to point and give suggestions for personal improvement areas.

2. Your mentor should be someone who you can reach out to, who is willing to listen and advise when needed. Your career mentor should be aware of your interview activities—and they should be a sounding board for you when things don’t go as well as you expect. They should be able to help you create actionable objectives as you look to reach your career milestones.

3. Your mentor should know the career field you are …

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