For Partners

The mentor manifesto

Be socratic.

Expect nothing in return (you’ll be delighted with what you do get back).

Be authentic / practice what you preach.

Be direct. Tell the truth, however hard.

Listen too.

The best mentor relationships eventually become two-way.

Be responsive.

Adopt at least one company every single year. Experience counts.

Clearly separate opinion from fact.

Hold information in confidence.

Clearly commit to mentor or do not. Either is fine.

Know what you don’t know. Say I don’t know when you don’t know. “I don’tknow” is preferable to bravado.

Guide, don’t control. Teams must make their own decisions. Guide but never tellthem what to do. Understand that it’s their company, not yours.

Accept and communicate with other mentors that get involved.

Be optimistic.

Provide specific actionable advice, don’t be vague.

Be challenging/robust but never destructive.

Have empathy. Remember that startups are hard.