Archaeologists excavating the pyramids discovered wheat seeds that dated back to around 2500 BC. As in the tradition of antiquity, the seeds were there for the dead pharaoh to eat if he got hungry. The find was important because it would enable scientists to determine what variety of wheat was in use in the ancient world and could be invaluable for engineering new types of wheat. Out of curiosity, the scientists planted the 4,500-year-old wheat seed in fertile soil and an amazing thing happened. The wheat seeds grew!
“No one can teach anyone anything of significance,” wrote the legendary psychologist Carl Rogers. The purpose of mentoring is to help another remember, renew and make ready to use. Mentoring is the facilitating of a bridge between knowledge from the mentor and understanding inside the mind of the protégé. That bridge is insight—the spark that fires the engine of wisdom. Mentoring is the process of awakening, nurturing and blossoming—just like the wheat seeds. It is the vehicle for giving the second greatest gift one can give another—the gift of growth.
It has been my honor to work with Marshall Goldsmith to bring you Managers as Mentors. Think of it as a handbook for insight-making through a mentor-protégé partnership. This week is the official launch of this powerful tool. I invite you to join, to learn, and to celebrate learning—the foundation for innovation, excellence and progress.