If You Could Have Anyone Be Your Business Mentor Who Would You Pick?

by / ⠀Startup Advice / April 7, 2011

richard-bransonWe reached out to our Under30CEO Members and asked them “If you could have anyone be your business mentor who would it be and why?” Below are their responses:

While reading please think about who you would want for a business mentor and leave your answer in the comments. Thanks!

1. Id have ether David Garland or Seth Godin because of their new  age marketing! if people dont know about your product or service they cant buy it. – Brad Alderton of TwiddyThreads.com

2. Warren Bennis: Just need to read his book “Still surprised” – Samuel Harf of Suprapak.com

3. Diane Von Furstenberg, hands down.  She is truly talented and one of my favorite designers, but she also has this incredible drive to create and be part of what she finds important. There is this sincerity in her entire brand, from the clothing to supporting women to the 2:00 AM tweets about being exhausted from a long and fulfilling day or how Angry Birds is really addicting. Everything she does is fun and exciting with a constant focus on leaving the world a better place. What an outstanding woman! – Anna Sprague of AnnaHeleneImage.com (launching in April) Twitter: @anna_helene

4. My business mentor is my father. Having been an entrepreneur for more than 40 years his wisdom, talent and example are the reason why I chose the route of entrepreneurship-the route of determination, patience and faith. – Crystal Bell – Fresh Start! Cleaning Services

5. Sam Nazarian of SBE. He has created a diverse enterprise of businesses. The guy has his hands in everything and that is where I strive to be one day. – Marcus Brandon – MembersOnlyDevelopment-Group

6. I would have to say SCORE, because these guys are my own Board of Advisors. – Lasherrick terrell – Terrell University Staffing  Services Twitter: @TerrellINC

7. My dream business mentor would be the rock star professional speaker and author, George Walther (http://www.georgewalther.com/). George is not only a brilliant and hilarious speaker with decades of experience, but more importantly, he is an excellent example of living your life exactly the way you want to live it. He and his wife relocate in a different locale around the world every year – from San Diego to Amsterdam to Honolulu to Bali, to name a few – while simultaneously sharing his unique message with anyone who will listen. – Jennie Mustafa-Julock – Coach Jennie Twitter: @CoachJennie

8. Ivanka Trump would my my ideal business mentor for several reasons.
#1 Her youth.  Five years older, she is close enough to my age to relate but old enough to give excellent insight into the challenges ahead.  She is at a very similar junction in her life as a young business woman, although our paths aren’t in the same arenas.
#2 Her upbringing.  The manner in which she was raised is of great interest.  While building a real estate empire, her parents were also able to teach and raise successful, driven children that did not indulge in “rich kid” excesses.  In her autobiography, she mentions her father was always accessible, taking her call regardless of who he was meeting with or what he was doing.  Thus, her parents were able to successfully balance business and home life and in doing so created a family dynasty.
#3 Her story (so far).  She has exhibited self-control and balance in a manner many wealthy children do not.  While she was given much, I feel she has truly earned her way.  Ivanka Trump would make an amazing business mentor.  As a documentary photographer at heart, I believe I would take more from her extensive travels than anything else.  At the publication time of The Trump Card, Ivanka mentions she has been to at least 100 different countries.  Her acute business skills combined with her innate understanding of so many cultures would make her the ideal mentor. – Opportunity & Success LLC Maria Joyner Photography Twitter: @mariajoyner

9. Richard Branson. He built something from nothing and continues to think outside the square. He never let adversity stop him. He has built an empire on a platform of ideas and continues to be a public figure, providing encouragement for business owners everywhere, even though he could easily retire. Branson simply never falls short. He keeps on pushing and pushing, thinking and thinking, until his goal is achieved. – EMILIAjoan International Twitter: @EMILIAjoanInt

10. Bill Gates. He is a visionary who anticipates the trends in technology and provides solutions that meet the needs. I would like to meet Mr. Gates one day; perhaps for a cup of coffee and a chat. – Shwan Abdulmajid – Pinnacle Web Services Twitter: @pinnaclewebserv

11. If I was able to be mentored by anyone it would undoubtedly be Richard Branson. He has been an entrepreneur since his earliest years, has tackled and dominated countless industries. He didn’t have to know everything about everything but he is humble, an amazing leader, a team playing and fearless! For this purpose he can bring together brilliance and lead them to tackle an unfamiliar industry.In addition he is leaving positive long lasting impacts on the world through his business and philanthropic successes. There is no better illustration of what I want to accomplish in coming years. – Opeyemi Thomas – CaterTime

12. James White CEO of Jamba Juice, I recently saw him on a mentor type show and was just amazing by the advice that he was giving this guy about systemizing your business. We are at that point and I would love the opportunity to treat him to a smoothie 🙂 and pick his brain.- Felecia Hatcher – Feverish Ice Cream Twitter: @feverishmiami

13. I would choose Sean “Diddy” Combs.  I respect his work ethic and the way he makes business look cool.  I think we would become great friends. – Larry Lynn – Off Campus Report Card LLC Twitter: @CEOLarry

14. Herb Kelleher, co-founder of Southwest Airlines.  I really admire his personality and the non-corporate culture he was able to instill at Southwest Airlines.  From my experience, the authoritarian leadership styles so common in large businesses don’t really work well in a small startup.  In a small company, employees are working long hours in confined spaces with grueling workloads.  Herb seemed to have a knack for producing stellar business results while still keeping employees laughing and enjoying their jobs despite the pressure and challenges they faced.  That is a magical combination in my book. – Darren Beck – Business Insurance Now Twitter: @BINInsurance

15. Alan Mulally of Ford – It takes a special type of CEO to accept the challenge of engineering the turnaround of an company during a turbulent economic climate. To make that company an industry leader again, revitalize an iconic brand, and make cars I want to drive at the same time – takes genius. A close second would be Reed Hastings of Netflix for his ability to see future trends and think outside the box. – Josh Nickell – Saturn Security Systems Twitter: @JNickell

16. Tough question, but I would say Paul from The Bible.  Paul had his own business as a means to provide for himself and yet lived out a mission in his life that was not defined by that business.  I’d like to have his mentorship in our culture of today on how best to maintain that balance. – Steve VanPoolen – KreativeMotive Twitter: @kreativemotive

17. I am extremely blessed to have a team of advisors who’ve been great mentors for me. But, if I had to choose one more, it would be Tory Johnson of Women for Hire. She’s an incredible person whom I greatly admire. – Heather R. Huhman – Come Recommended Twitter: @heatherhuhman

18. I’m fortunate for #3–My dad is my mentor. No one knows me better than him–obviously–and he’s been an entrepreneur all his life. This way he really supports me and encourages me to push forward, plus I’m able to bounce ideas off him and see if they make sense from an outside perspective (and he’s not afraid to tell me if the ideas are good or really stupid!) – Jay Root – Get Customers Right Now Twitter: @jroot2187

19. Richard Branson – he just continues to inspire me to think bigger and bolder and I’d love to have the mentoring session in space or on Necker Island. – Natalie Sisson – The Suitcase Entrepreneur Twitter: @nataliesisson

20. MJ DeMarco, author of the The Millionaire Fastlane. MJ has really heightened my entrepreneur senses and really gives excellent advice to succeed. The words he speaks are honest, incredible, and so motivating! Highly recommended for any new and current entrepreneurs. – Alan Kong – Alan-Kong.com Twitter: @Rockongalan

21. My ideal business mentor would be Timothy Ferriss, not just because he created the 4-hour Workweek, but also because he is constantly breaking down systems to find the most effective way of achieving something. I would love to learn from him all the insights he’s picked up from testing, experimenting, and going against the grain. He’s also boiled down efficient traveling to a science which is something I obsess about on my own. – Edlin Choi – Morning Worm Puzzle Alarm Clock Twitter: @EdlyC

22. Besides my father who currently provides me with invaluable entrepreneurial information I would be honored to consider Jerry Weintraub as one of my business mentors.  Jerry Weintraub, famed Hollywood mogul was one of the great entrepreneurs of our time via his ability to not only find the deals but go out and create the deals for himself.  Jerry Weintraub always had a vision, he knew what he wanted and he was never afraid to go out in the world and get it. – Brady Lee – I’m Partying Twitter: @impartying

23. I’d love to have a mentorship cocktail of Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and Oprah. They both understand the importance of balancing profitability and social responsibility, and that’s exactly what MyEveryzine is all about as we focus our efforts on supporting education. – Ashlyee Hickman – MyEveryzine Twitter: @MyEveryzine

24. Tim Sanders would be the best business mentor for me. His bizlove and great sense of humor makes him easily relatable. He also reads a lot and has a kick-butt book list of must-reads. – Mikaela Louve – Louve Notes Media Twitter: @MikaelaLouve

25. Mark Zuckerberg is kind of ideal for me. Steve Jobs, or everybody who prove to be/or will be a winner in this globalize competition. – Iksan Oetama – Twinkle Witch Twitter: @IksanOetama

About The Author


Matt Wilson is Co-Founder of Under30Experiences, a travel company for young people ages 21-35. He is the original Co-founder of Under30CEO (Acquired 2016). Matt is the Host of the Live Different Podcast and has 50+ Five Star iTunes Ratings on Health, Fitness, Business and Travel. He brings a unique, uncensored approach to his interviews and writing. His work is published on Under30CEO.com, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, Huffington Post, Reuters, and many others. Matt hosts yoga and fitness retreats in his free time and buys all his food from an organic farm in the jungle of Costa Rica where he lives. He is a shareholder of the Green Bay Packers.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This