On Saturday, we went for the wedding of one of my close friends. The wedding was at Alausa Ikeja. I had worked briefly in that area but for some reasons I couldn’t find my way around. And you know driving in Lagos can be terrible because once you miss a particular turn or lane, you have to continue until you get to a place where you can turn back.
So we were careful and drove slowly. We asked some people around how we could get to the place. No one seemed to know. People said drive front, drive back. No one was certain.
At a point, I asked my husband to stop and I came down on that CMD road in magodo. There was a joint there and I had been there before. I decided to ask the security personnel’s there. I needed to be brief too because my husband parked on the narrow road.
I walked down to them and said ‘good evening sir..please how do I get to NNPC gas plant..’
They didn’t know. I asked again how to get to CBD since they work around there, they should be familiar with those places.
They didn’t know and asked me if I was sure I knew where I was going to.
I wasn’t sure but I knew my friend was sure, otherwise he couldn’t have put it on the IV card.
Sounding almost frustrated, I said, ‘he said CBD Alausa na..’
‘Oh, this is not Alausa now…this is CMD. Alausa is over there(pointing across to the other road). Once you cross, ask them how to get to the place.’
I thanked him and left. I told my husband to drive down to go turn. He wasn’t sure but I insisted I was sure. There was a round about that would connect us in front.
We eventually turned and got to the other side. We couldn’t locate the venue. We checked for sign posts or even the NNPC gas plant landmark but nothing either.
We had to stop and ask. We weren’t even sure we were on the right road. I saw a lady walking like she knew her way around. I decided to ask her. As I was asking her,my husband was asking an ‘agbero’ on the other side.
The agbero gave my husband a direction. But the Lady told me she was going to the venue.
So I asked her to enter so we could go there together.
She obliged and we turned. We started driving fast because someone who knew the road was with us. We got to a place and she asked us to turn.
Lo and behold, we had already passed there but because we didn’t know it was there we were looking for, we missed it.
We still didn’t see any signage that says ‘ostra halls and hotel’ which was the venue. Some agbero around were asking us if we were going to Ostra and said they had parking space. The lady who knew the road asked us to continue down inside.
She was confident because she knew the place. We got to the venue and she alighted and asked us to go inside. We were more than grateful because she made the journey easier for us.
I remembered the saying that if you know someone who knows the road, the journey becomes shorter. If you know someone that can direct you to the place, the journey becomes easier. But if you know someone willing to take you to the place, it becomes easier, faster and shorter.
I knew where I was going but I was in the wrong place. When we were able to figure out the place where we were going, it became easier. And the lady made it more short.
If we hadn’t been with the lady, we would have gotten there and still missed it because we didn’t know the place. We would have maybe found it after several attempts again and pay for a parking space whereas there was a space inside the hotel. We would have trekked down the hilly road with my baby on my high heels.
This lady saved us money, time and stress.
That is the role of a mentor.
At some point of our journey towards our vision, we would need some certain help, advice from people who have been there.
Beyond helping us figure out where we are going to, they help us with their rich experiences and avoid us making the mistakes they made.
They take us by hand to the place where we long to be. This means that if it took them thirty years of trial and error to get where they were, it will take you three years to get to where they are.
Beyond finding a role model, find a mentor in your chosen field. Your mentor is not your friend. Your mentor is your coach. Someone who can tell you the truth as it is.
Find that person today and watch how your business, career, profession will thrive.
And when you’ve gotten to the place you desire, find someone else to guide. Don’t swallow the knowledge, share to others too.
See you guys at the top!