Targeting at Your Dream

Mentor: Linda Zhang (CEIBS EMBA2001 International Class)
Partner, Keystone Group (Shanghai) Ltd.; Corporate Coach
Student: Susie Zhang (CEIBS MBA2011)

My mentor Ms. Linda Zhang is a positive, friendly, and easy-going person who advocates a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. From her self-introduction, I can feel that she has her own ideas about life and career and never hesitates to put her ideas into practice. Impressed by her easy-going personality and positive attitude towards life and work, I wanted to know her and learn from her. As it turns out, Linda has given me a lot of valuable guidance and help, even far beyond my original expectations.

1. Change and growth start from self-discovery
What’s so special about Linda is that she seldom imposes her views on me during the mentoring process. In her opinion, mentoring is a process to “take people to where they want to go”; mentoring helps people unleash their potential and perform at their best; and mentoring is not to teach, but to help others learn by themselves. Unlike my former teachers and mentors in life and work, Linda focuses more on guiding people to discover their true thoughts and true desires.

2. Increasing self-awareness and helping decide on a career direction  
I didn’t have a clear career plan when entering CEIBS. One idea was to join a consulting firm after graduation for a highly intensive training and a deeper understanding of various industries; another idea was to start with a large company in a specific industry to accumulate expertise and leverage my previous work experience.

Following a professional conversation, Linda used several analytical models and thinking tools to help me reflect upon my past work experiences and envision future career development. Under her guidance, I now have a clearer understanding of my professional interests, work motives, and the requirements of organizational and work environments. Her guidance has really helped me land a satisfactory job.

3. Promoting self-development and a deeper thinking about life.  
Career development was my major concern when entering CEIBS. But after careful communications with Linda, I started to think more deeply about my life and is now more determined about what to do next and more confident about how to do that, with a more positive and peaceful state of mind.

Under Linda’s influence, I’ve read not only business-related book, but also books designed for self-cultivation. What’s more, I’ve tasted the freedom and happiness brought by a positive attitude and a healthy lifestyle. Only with a healthier attitude toward life can I go farther in my future career.

Now I'm about to graduate and this year’s mentoring program is coming to an end, but the influence of a true mentor like Linda doesn’t stop there. What I’ve learned from Linda, including but not limited to what I’ve mentioned above, will still be useful in my future work and life, helping me better discover, change and grow myself.