In June I was saddened to read of the passing of John Wooden, the famed UCLA Bruins basketball coach. As I listened to and read the tributes that were recorded in the media, I sensed that this man was revered as much for his off-court character as he was for his on-court prowess.
He left a legacy of honoring his commitments, listening to his conscience, living by the highest of standards and always giving his very best. I read that among the advice his father, Joshua, passed along to him were the phrases, “Help others” and “Make friendship a fine art.” These lessons became important dimensions of the legacy John Wooden left behind. He was a mentor to many, intentionally helping guide the development of those within his sphere of influence.
As we reflect on our careers, there are many people who have crossed our path and we may have even been fortunate enough to have a few people take the time to invest in us. Much has been written on the “rules” for finding a mentor, including experience, character, availability, open- mindedness, caring and having a positive outlook.
I was wondering if any of you have benefited from a mentoring relationship? What “rules” have worked best for you? What guidance can you give those who are at the edge of the mentoring pool but haven’t yet jumped in? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if “helped others” was included in our legacy? Thanks for sharing your thoughts.