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It’s great to have someone with more drive and experience to guide the growth of your business.
In this article, you can find out the best places to find these startup mentors.
What is a startup advisor and what do they do?
In essence, a startup advisor is an expert with training and experience in a specific field or industry who provides startup founders with advice, mentorship and networking opportunities.
They help entrepreneurs leverage their skills, experience and connections to maximize the potential of their new startups.
Below are 8 platforms on how to find mentors for your startup.
8 Platforms to Find Them Online
growth mentor A platform providing on-demand development advice from vetted experts. After signing up, you can get started by booking a free onboarding call to discuss your needs. Then filter through experts and book a Zoom, Google Hangout or Skype call directly on the experts’ calendar.
How to sign up: Click on the Signup button, fill in your information, and make the one-time payment by credit/debit card. You will have immediate access after signing up.
worth: $100/month, billed monthly, or $75/month, billed quarterly.
things to consider: Over 60% of advisors offer their sessions for free. This is great when trying to figure out how to find mentors for your startup. For the other 40%, you’ll have to pay them hourly (this isn’t included in the $100/month plan).
You can filter experts based on the tools they use and their expertise, such as growth hacking, social media, content marketing, outbound marketing, and more.
They have a strict vetting process for experts.
mentorcruz A platform to provide mentorship with tech leaders. Sessions are ongoing for a monthly fee or one-time counseling calls.
How to sign up: Click “Get Started”, fill in the form with your information, search through a huge list of candidates to find the mentor you want and apply for a consultation.
worth: Depending on each advisor, this can go from $100/month to several hundred per month.
clarity Another platform to get on-demand startup advice from experts. Browse the community of experts to find your fit. You then request a call with your chosen expert and are connected via the conference line provided.
How to sign up: Sign up for free by clicking the Signup button and filling in your first and last name, email, and password.
worth: Free to join Clarity. You are then charged for the call based on the specialist’s per-minute rate.
things to consider: There is the potential to build a relationship with an expert that results in a mentor, but this is not the outright purpose of the site. And you’re charged for the estimated call time the first time, and then after the call the charge is adjusted for the actual length.
cofounders lab is a platform that gives you access to over 400,000 potential co-founders, team members, and advisors.
How to sign up: Sign up for the site for free with LinkedIn. You will completely fill out your profile for access.
worth: There is a free membership with limited benefits. Then there is a premium membership which has a lot more to offer along with the free membership. You can opt for 3 months for 19.99/month (59.99 billed quarterly). 6 month option for 16.99/month (102.00 billed semi-annually). and a 12-month option for 14.99 per month (180.00 billed annually).
things to consider: Is a 3 step process: Sign up for free with LinkedIn, complete your profile to activate the matching algorithm, then search by skill, country, city, industry, business stage, or potential mentors, team members, and startups Search to find the experience. co-founder. It is one of the biggest startup platforms on the planet. But you will absolutely need to do those warm introductions once the algorithmic process begins.
micromentor is a free, non-profit platform connecting entrepreneurs and volunteer business mentors.
How to sign up: You create your profile by highlighting what you do and what you hope to accomplish. You are then able to reach out to other people in the community with messages that interest you to start a mentorship conversation with them. Start mentorship with phone calls and get to know each other, go over goal-setting, problem-solving, and more. Continue mentorship with the development tools provided by the site.
things to consider: It’s good that it’s a free social network, but what kind of mentors you’ll find and how many people will help one-on-one and for how long is unclear. If you reach the point of finding an advisor of your choice you will need to discuss this.
6) Startup Weekend
startup Weekend There is an experience that consists of 54 hours of life at startup:
Day 1: Network/pitch/pick a project/build a team.
Day 2: Learn from Mentors/Work on chosen projects and access resources and mentors to do everything from building your product or service to finding customers and more.
Day 3: Your team presents the product/service in front of a crowd and expert panel, and when it’s all done, celebrate all your hard work and success.
How to sign up: Each TechStars Startup Weekend event has an associated website with a registration page. Get started by browsing events in your city Here,
worth: Ticket prices vary by event, skill set and purpose.
things to consider: You are expected to participate on all 3 days. They send you off with the next steps and hopefully you’ve built a network and the resources to take your idea with you to success.
Love that it gives you real life experience and takes you right into the depths of things. But it’s just a weekend and more of an opportunity to network than anything.
7) Sparrow Startup
sparrow Provides hands-on affordable mentorship calls with founders who have built, expanded, and sold their own startups.
How to sign up: You have to apply for their waiting list. Only 5 startups are given access every month.
worth: Sessions start at $125/hour.
things to consider: Unlike other websites, there is no monthly fee on Sparrow. Once you apply, you are asked about your startup’s growth goals and offered a free 30-minute demo call with an advisor of your choice. Their founder testimonials can be found Here,
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founder network Provides peer mentorship to tech startups globally.
How to sign up: Click the “Request Invitation” button, go to Membership Criteria, and then fill in your information. If you pass the initial screening they will contact you and you will continue from there.
worth: After passing an initial screening, you’ll get to choose from one of four memberships based on your experience level.
- Bootstrap: $41.62/month (billed annually) – For founders with experience generating annual revenue or raising less than $150,000 in funding.
- Angel: $83.29/month (billed annually) – For founders with experience generating annual revenue or raising $150,000 – $1.5M in funding.
- Series A+: $208.83/month (billed annually) – For founders with experience generating annual revenue or raising $1.5M+ in funding.
- Lifetime: $10,000 (one time fee) – For serial entrepreneurs. One time payment and never arrears.
things to consider: Each month the Membership Committee admits a new group of full-time Tech Founders who are nominated by existing members. There are added bonuses like startup discounts and free promotion for their newsletter readers if you get a mentorship opportunity. This is a great opportunity for tech startups, but you have to do some work to be accepted
Comparing These Online Tools
All of these present an amazing opportunity when you figure out how to find mentors for your startup. You can filter your choices and find mentors at different stages of startup and for different purposes like finance, marketing, operations, sales, IT, HR, etc.
If you’re just starting out, go with StartupWeekend or Micromentor, as they have the ability to match you with great prospects. And Startup Weekend’s emphasis on networking and getting right into the nitty-gritty of startup life is a huge plus and a fun idea.
GrowthMentor, MentorCruise, and Clarity are going to be your on-demand resources. If you’re really not sure about deciding on just one advisor, these give you the opportunity to try a few out before settling on one.
You can ask questions and get advice from people at different levels. You have to assimilate all the information and find your direction.
Quora gives you the opportunity to ask your questions and give advice to others. You get a chance to immerse yourself in a community of entrepreneurs, but there’s no real purpose to match you with a mentor.
If you’re willing to do the work, it can turn out that way. But don’t go in expecting anything more than information.
And finally, if you’re ready to build some solid ground on your journey to find a startup mentor, CoFoundersLab and FoundersNetwork will be your best options. They are very vetted and offer some great bonuses in addition to providing top-notch advice.
3 places to find them offline
1) Networking Events
Industry hubs, conferences, speaking engagements, book clubs and readings, volunteering and more. These events are designed to bring people together.
And it’s not as scary as your heart tries to make it out to be. Don’t be afraid to meet and match. You can’t get your business out there if you don’t get it out there.
2) Startup “Hotspot”
Every city has a thriving startup scene. From coworking spaces for entrepreneurs to frequent creative gatherings at local libraries to grand openings.
Frequent spots and events that gather people like you will position your business for growth and, with a little effort, land you directly in front of your startup mentor.
3) Friends and Family
You may have that successful entrepreneur in your circle whom you are looking to help mentor you in your startup journey.
Scour your network and try to chat once or twice a week about growing your business until you find the right mentoring relationship. These connections are easiest to build and can help you find a top-notch business mentor even if you’re financially strapped.
So, Should You Get a Startup Mentor? We think so.
Regardless of an entrepreneur’s success in his startup, it is essential to have expert advice and support to ensure the continued growth and stability of the company. A startup mentor is a valuable asset to any organization, helping to provide the guidance and networking opportunities needed to achieve success.