Most people understand the value of mentorship. One survey found almost universal support for the concept — 97% of those with a mentor found the relationship valuable. But not all mentors are the same.

Instead, you’ll likely benefit from a variety of different professional role models throughout your career. You might need different types of help at different points of your career. As such, it’s important to consider the distinct types of insights you can gain from the diverse colleagues you encounter.

With that in mind, here are the five kinds of mentors that you can profit from:

5 Types of Mentors That Can Help Advance Your Career

The Teacher

As you build you career, you’ll need to master many technical skills. You’ll start with a formal education and build on that with professional training resources. In addition, hands-on experience — old-fashioned trial and error — will help you perfect your chops.

However, some veteran direction can speed your learning process and unlock secrets you might have missed otherwise. That’s where this type of mentor comes in. These teachers share the intricate details of the job in a way that lets you get the details right.

The Idol

As you start your career, you likely don’t have the knowledge necessary to define the ideal business persona. While you learn how to excel at the job, you also need to define what stellar performance looks like.

That’s where The Idol comes in. You might not have much direct contact with this kind of mentor. Rather, they present an example for you to follow. They are the office superstar that becomes your role model and show you how to conduct yourself.

The Connector

You’ve heard some version of this: “It’s not what you know. It’s who you know.” Careers are built on networking — and as a newbie, you suffer a distinct lack of professional connections.

Enter The Connector. This mentor knows everybody. And they are willing to introduce you. These veterans will help you meet the people you need to know to jumpstart your career.

Along with pumping up your network, these mentors also demonstrate the skills you’ll need to become a master on your own. Follow their lead. You’ll discover the best way to meet professional contacts and nurture those relationships over time.

The Life Coach

So far, we’ve focused on in-office lessons. But building a career doesn’t just involve work. Professional success requires a broader view of your situation, from issues surrounding personal finance to how to achieve a good work/life balance.

The Life Coach provides these lessons. They teach you more than the job. With their example and their knowledge, they help you become a more well-rounded person, as well as a high-performing operator.

The Friend

The relationship here is more balanced than in many of the other connections discussed here. A mentor might start out in another category. But over time, you and your mentor grow into something approximating equal colleagues. However, you still share a special bond — you avoid becoming competitors and each of you contributes to the other’s career.

Remember: the mentor gets something out of the relationship too. As they grow into The Friend, you can repay their contribution to your professional development by offering them comfort and support as well.

Need Help Getting Connected to Exceptional Companies and Exceptional People?

Finding great mentors starts by joining great organizations. A top recruiter, like Hiregy, can place you in amazing companies, allowing you to connect with top-flight coworkers.

Contact Hiregy to jumpstart your career today.