I was listening to Dan Miller’s 48Days podcast today and he was interviewing Andy Andrews, a well-known author and speaker. They were talking about mentoring, and the process of finding a mentor. Andy pointed out that most people that we would like to have mentor us are very busy, including himself. But he added that if someone were to approach him about meeting him for lunch to talk about his interests, such as the technique of shooting a bow (which he just bought and is into with his kids) or sharing a vintage outdoor magazine with him (which he collects), and “oh by the way, I’d like to ask you a couple questions, too”, he’d be all over that. The point was that we need to be open to the possibility that we can try to bring something of value to the conversation, to that person that we want to get something from. Not in a manipulative or bribing way, but in a way that makes it worth their time as well. In short, it seems to me that it comes down to the Law of Sowing and Reaping, which says that we reap what we sow. We need to be willing to give to get. So if you want a smile, give a smile. If you want encouragement, encourage someone else first. If you want a mentor, who can you also be a mentor to? As for taking that potential mentor to lunch, maybe just buying lunch is value enough. After all, they have to eat too. But in a busy world with all kinds of people vying for attention, what can we offer that will make us stand out from the crowd?