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What makes a great mentor?

Posted by Celia Daly on Jun 22, 2018 1:33:39 PM

At Canopy, our mentors are a key aspect to creating an environment of growth for our founders. Connection to the right people in the right places, especially in an industry like cannabis, really can be the key to success. So, we're always trying to find the right people to join our mentoring program. 

So what do we look for? Well, its important to remember that just because someone is great at their job or industry, doesn't mean they would be a great mentor - just like not every pro athlete makes a good coach. Thanks to our friends at the Global Accelerator Network (GAN), we've been able to identify some important factors that make a great mentor. Check them out:

  • Quality of input. Most often this comes from extensive domain expertise.
  • Domain expertise and deep experience.
  • The Socratic approach. They don’t force an opinion onto a company. Instead, they ask thoughtful questions and let them get there on their own.
  • Diving deep. A mentor who will dive deep with a company, get down and dirty with the product, the business, the customers, and the financials can be the most helpful.
  • Lead mentor. One who will spend time weekly with the company for the duration of the program.
  • Makes introductions when appropriate.
  • Doesn’t ask for anything in return. A great mentor isn’t going to say “Sure, I’ll make that intro for you, but I want x% of the sale.” This kind of approach is okay, after the program ends. But during the program, a mentor should be willing to spend time without expectation of any return.
  • Connects with the founders on some level, whether it be personal, a matter of knowing the business, etc. A mentor who doesn’t connect with either the business or the founders won’t be motivated to help the company.
  • Gets involved day one of the program and stays involved until the end.

Think you have what it takes to be an awesome mentor? Apply today!

Topics: Entrepreneurship, cannabis business, accelerator, startup, mentor