You would think January was Self-Improvement Month, with all of the people who resolve to change, increase, enhance something in their lives, a turning over of a new leaf. January isn’t self-improvement month though, that’s in September. January is dedicated to National Mentoring Month. Kind of interesting, right? While many are really focused on running a marathon, eating healthier, working out more, cursing less, being more positive, etc. etc.…in the “nationals” of months, the first month of the year is dedicated to focusing on not you, but someone else. Or is it? Being the overachievers that we are, we think there’s enough for everyone – little for you, little for me.

Being a mentor can be an experience that’s rewarding not only for the mentee, but the mentor. Amazing things happen all around when you focus on others, plus you feel good!

Not sure where you are with your resolutions as you enter week 2 of 2013, but sometimes people are fueled by doing for others. For instance, you would never miss a deadline for your client, right? But you might slack on your own commitment to yourself (read: Exercise. Or eat lunch. Really, it’s OK, you can take a break!)

I challenge you to do two things this week (rest of the month and year!):
1) Focus on serving others
2) Treat yourself like a customer (with superb service)

Your Customer
In your business, you may have goals to increase revenue, shop new vendors, minimize meetings, etc. but have you focused on what’s keeping you in business? What’s actually keeping you in business is your customers. What ways are you able to better serve your customer? A mentor is defined as: “a wise and trusted counselor or teacher. An influential senior sponsor or supporter.” Perhaps you don’t have an opportunity to ‘counsel’ your clientele, however, you are a wise and trusted service or product provider, otherwise, they probably wouldn’t purchase from you, right? Find out what their goals are for the year, and is there a service or product you have that can help them reach that goal? Something that you can create?

You’re a Customer
Within your business (and/or life) treat yourself like a customer. Schedule time to work on your resolutions. Whether it’s getting more exercise or knocking out projects. Perhaps you have to run around the block so you can come back with a fresh take on your client’s challenges or come up with a solution.

Look at what you’re doing for yourself as a way to serve your clients.

Share with us what resolutions you have made for yourself this year? What ways are you doing new things for your customers? And are you mentoring anyone this month? Has someone mentored you and how has that proven valuable for work/life?

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