Models are the best mentors

Did you know that Mentor was actually a person that later become a verb?

noun. Mentor Greek Mythology Odysseus’s trusted counselor, in whose guise Athena became the guardian and teacher of Telemachus.

verb. To serve as a trusted counselor or teacher, especially in occupational settings.

One of the best methods of mentorship that is often underused is modeling.

The Hebrews established an amazing 4-step method of effective mentoring “back in the day” that was based on modeling.

Here is their simple method.

1. I do it.

2. I do it and you watch me do it.

3. You do it and I watch you do it.

4. You do it.

Watch me lead and I will watch you lead then you will lead. ~C.J. Stewart

When I began traveling down the road to officially become a mentor in 2007 by way of L.E.A.D., I didn’t even really know what the word mentor meant. In that, I realized that knowing is better than assumptions if you want to serve and make significant and sustainable impact.

I learned that in order to become an effective mentor, you need to first know what you are doing so that you can model it. I’m able to effectively empower an at risk generation of black males from Atlanta Public Schools (APS) to lead and transform their city of Atlanta because I was them.

L.E.A.D. Ambassador Denzel Campbell (USC-Beaufort), C.J. Stewart and L.E.A.D. Ambassador Desmond Stegall (Grambling State University)

I attended Grove Park Elementary School (APS) which is an inner city Atlanta school and used baseball and education to access Georgia State University as a student-athlete and later went on to play professional baseball in the Chicago Cubs organization.

In addition to L.E.A.D., my wife Kelli and I own Diamond Directors which is our for profit business that provides the blueprint of success for diamond sport athletes. Since 1998, our clientele includes over 100 college baseball scholarship athletes, several MLB 1st round draft picks and Major League Baseball clients such as Jason Heyward, Dexter Fowler and Andrew McCutchen.

I think a role model is a mentor – someone you see on a daily basis, and you learn from them. ~Denzel Washington

My childhood through adult life experiences as well as my professional expertise uniquely positioned me to reestablish baseball in the inner city of Atlanta in 2007 with my wife. 

L.E.A.D. offers 12-month programming to over 200 APS black male student-athletes grades 6th through 12th. Our pillars of excellence include academics, athletics (baseball), commerce and civic responsibility. We strategically use the Habitudes curriculum by Dr. Tim Elmore as a performance enhancer for our L.E.A.D. student-athletes.

L.E.A.D. has an amazing Pathway2Empowerment methodology that moves our APS students-athletes from grades 6th-12th to and through college.

So what is it that I ultimately want our L.E.A.D. Ambassadors to do you might ask?

I want our L.E.A.D. Ambassadors to lead their city of Atlanta and state of Georgia to lead the world. Here are three ways that they will do it.

1. Serve as a Chief Executive Officer for an Atlanta based Fortune 100 company by 2040. Leadership is influence.

2. Serve as the Governor of the State of Georgia by 2040. Governors are the heads of the state and not a position for just any body. 

3. Represent the State of Georgia as a U.S. Senator by 2040. Senators create law.

C.J. Stewart at the 2015 Governor Nathan Deal Inauguration 

Before you can give back, you must have something to give. ~C.J. Stewart

Are you a mentor?

What skills do you model well for others?

What guarantees can you make to your mentees?