Be a Mentor

By Brad DeVille on Nov 23, 2021

Mentoring is something that I really enjoy. I rarely turn down the opportunity to offer guidance to students or young professionals considering a career in advertising and marketing. Usually, you can tell in the first minute whether they give a darn or are just there because someone put them up to it. 

Recently I was presented with an opportunity to participate in the Business Education classes at Brandon Valley High School. In Mr. Rothenberger’s class, the business students were grouped into small teams and asked to connect with a local business, identifying a need for marketing services, as well as providing strategy and creative executions to solve their “client’s” need. I was really impressed with how the students and local businesses had committed to the project and worked together towards real solutions. Props to the local businesses that participated in this great experience. 

I also got to join in on the research and strategy stage with a chance to help the students understand the need for up-front research and strategy before digging into the fun creative part. I was then able to sit with each team to help talk through tactics and efforts they could use to flush out their ideas. At their age, half of the students were just ready for the lunch hour, but my reward is seeing the lights come on for the other half when you take the time. 

Mentoring is an easy ‘yes’ for me because I remember being there. Grasping for something that made sense. Looking for direction with a project or a career path. Desiring guidance for business or life in general. 

The Caliber team also enjoys mentoring students when given the opportunity. We occasionally host job shadows, review portfolios, or just offer career direction to young professionals. Last week Caliber had the opportunity to host a marketing team from USD, where we presented them with an upcoming campaign we are planning. The students will then have two weeks to draft their marketing ideas and recommendations and pitch them back to us. Some of our staff also take on their own opportunities to mentor young professionals and youth in our community.

Mentoring can provide numerous benefits and serves as an opportunity to look outside your usual network and potentially connect with someone very different from you. It allows you to teach and advise young professionals, but you can also learn something from them as well. I would highly encourage each of you to consider being a mentor for a student, young professional, or youth to help them shape their future and expand upon your leadership skills.