If you’re a teenager considering entrepreneurship as a career, and if you’re asking, “How can I find a mentor to show me the way?” hang tight. Before you spend thousands of dollars on online experts and gurus that say they’ll change your life, hang tight.
A few months back I did a video titled 14 Ways Teenage Entrepreneurs Can Make Money. Not only did that video get a few hundred thousand views, it also brought thousands of Snapchat messages. I got multiple messages where people said things like, “Hey Pat, I’m about to have my mother pay $6,000 to this guy who says he can help me become a millionaire. What do you think? Should I do it or not? I’m saying yes, and my mom’s saying no. What do you think?”
I said, “Hang tight.” Because the first thing you have to think about if you want to become an entrepreneur and get a mentor is what level you’re at.
Let me explain what I mean by what level you’re at. If you choose to become a body builder, you’re not going to hire a personal trainer that works with top body builders. When you’re first starting out, you’re not going to hire someone that charges hundreds of dollars an hour. You just need someone who can teach you the basics about weight lifting to see if it even sparks something in you. Then, if you fall in love with body building, it’s a whole different story. At that point you can hire a real pro.
So the question I want you to ask yourself is what level of entrepreneurship you’re at right now, based on the level of income.
We’ll look at this with four tiers.
The first tier is for those of you that are currently making zero dollars per month. At that level, you can find someone that is making $3,000 a month as a teenage entrepreneur that can be a mentor to you.
Now what if you’re saying, “Pat, I am making $2,000 per month as a teenage entrepreneur. What do I do with that?” Then you need to find a tier two mentor that’s making $3,000 – $10,000 per month. You can see what that person can show you how to do.
What if you’re saying, “But Pat, I’m making $9,000 a month.” Then you need a tier three, $100,000 to a million dollars mentor.
If you say, “Pat, I’m making $300,000 per year.” Then maybe you need a tier four, a million and up.
What if you’ve never made money? Can the tier four person show you how to do things? No, because the tier four person is going to speak a certain language to you that you’re not going to understand. That will frustrate the tier four person. It will also frustrate you because they’ll expect you to speak their language, and you don’t know even the basics of that language.
So what do you look for when you’re looking for a mentor? The biggest recommendation I can tell you is to keep the TEA Theory in mind. What is the TEA Theory when it comes down to mentors?
T – Theory
E – Experience
A – Application
Let me explain.
There are mentors out there who are very good at teaching you theories, but they’ve never done what they’re teaching. Those mentors are called, university or college professors.
They will teach you how to run a business, but if you ask, “I’m sorry, Miss Jones, but have you ever ran a business before?” they will answer, “No, I have not. But I’ve consulted many. I’ve read all the books.” That’s a theory-level mentor. There’s nothing wrong with that. They can still bring you value, but they’re the lowest level mentors.
E – Experience
Next, you have experience. Do you know who’s experienced? With experience, you would ask, “Have you ever ran a business Mr. Jones?” And he’d reply, “I’ve never ran a business, but guess what? I worked under Steve Jobs for six years.” That person has a lot of experience, and has a lot of value. They didn’t run the business, but they worked very closely with someone that did.
For example, if you wanted to be mentored by someone in real estate, you could ask, “Have you ever done real estate before?” If they answered, “I never have, but for 10 years I was the assistant for the #1 real estate agent in Beverly Hills,” that’s money right there. That person can tell you what the person did, how they worked, how they treated their clients, what they did when they almost went out of business and so on.
A – Application
Then, level three is application, which is the actual source. This is a person that tells you what they’ve actually done, the things that have worked for them. This is the entrepreneur that has their own theories, has experience, and has applied their theories successfully. I call these guys trifectas. And by the way, they’re tough to find. For example, Elon Musk is a trifecta. Mark Cuban is a trifecta.
A lot of people making YouTube videos are purely level one and level two. Very few are level three.
So again, do some due diligence on your own to know where a mentor is at in regards to the TEA Theory. As much as you can, get an application type of mentor that’s trifecta.
Now having said that, so now, how do you get a mentor as a teenage entrepreneur? There are four levels.
Number one is a dead mentor. What is a dead mentor? Steve Jobs is dead. Go study his content. Go study anybody that worked closely with him. Watch every one of his interviews. See how he answers things. See how he thinks. Go see what his enemies said about him. Why didn’t his enemies like him? What did people in Silicon Valley say about him.
Go study Rockefeller. What happened to Rockefeller? What happened between Rockefeller and Carnegie? Learn what they fought about.
Go study Benjamin Franklin. Benjamin Franklin is probably one of the least recognized entrepreneurs to study. Go study how that guy came up. Study how he went to Europe and negotiated deals. Go study his battles with relatives.
Regardless of your age and where in the world you live, you can study Benjamin Franklin. You can study Steve Jobs, and Rockefeller. They’re all dead.
And I would much rather have you study those dead mentors than pay $6,000 to an online guru that’s “going to change your life.”
Number two, an online mentor. Now what do I mean by an online mentor? I’m not talking an online mentor you pay. I’m talking about an online mentor that has content accessible to you. Do not spend money, until you learn how to do the basics.
There are many online mentors that can teach you the basics about marketing, and all this other stuff. Matter of fact, if you haven’t watched Valuetainment, my challenge to you would be this. Watch all the Valuetainment videos. It will typically take you a couple of months to watch all the episodes. As you watch all of them, watch what happens. After watching them, you won’t speak the same language.
Every week I get hundreds of messages. People say things like:
I watched this video and I grew my business from $7,000 a month to $83,00 a month.
I’m a teenage entrepreneur. I’m 13 years old. And today I made $625 because of what you taught me in this video.
There are a lot of online mentors out there, and a lot of content to study for free.
Listen in here for how you can find a mentor that is a local center of influence.
Next, shadow a successful entrepreneur. By the way, you don’t get to this level overnight. But if you can get to the level where you can shadow a successful entrepreneur, take advantage of the opportunity.
If you can be around the environment of a successful entrepreneur that’s working locally, you’ll learn a lot. For example, one of the most important things you can learn is how to deal with conflicts. You can also learn negotiations, how they handle enemies, and how they discuss things. You can study their mannerisms, how their brain is wired, and how to process certain issues.
When I did this, I didn’t care how late it was. It was worth staying late to have a 10-minute conversation. I was there because I wanted to learn. All I was looking for was how to feed my mind, and see things I could do better.
If You Have Aspirations of Becoming an Entrepreneur
So with that being said, if you are a teenager with an aspiration of becoming an entrepreneur, it’s one of the craziest decisions you’ll ever make. But if you’re serious, if you have it in your blood to be an entrepreneur, and if you’re willing to improve and learn and do your part, it’s one of the best decisions you’ll ever make.
With that being said, if you have any questions, you can snap me at betdavid19. But don’t snap me and say, “Pat, can you mentor me?” because I get that every day. Don’t snap me and tell me you want me to mentor you if you haven’t yet watched all the Valuetainment videos. And by the way, the way that I’ll know if you watched all the Valuetainment videos is if you comment on every single video and tell me what you got from it.
So if you have any questions, you can snap me on Snapchat, and you can also leave your questions and thoughts below. And if you haven’t yet subscribed to my YouTube channel, click on the button below to subscribe.