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A few weeks ago, a young farrier posted a message on Facebook seeking advice on how to expand his hoof-care knowledge. While his apprenticeship was going well, he wanted to learn about other areas of equine footcare that weren’t a specialty for the veteran farrier with whom he is working.
This is not uncommon when an apprentice only experi-ences the work of one farrier. It’s why many farriers seek out one or more mentors who can help them become more experienced and professional while providing advice on most any aspect of hoof-care work, business management ideas or other needs. Many of these relationships last a lifetime.
A mentor is someone who helps you with your career, advises on specific situations or offers general life advice out of the goodness of his or her heart. It includes a commitment to helping others develop and progress.
While a mentor is an experienced and trusted adviser, counselor and guide, they should not be confused with a coach. Mentoring involves a long-term relationship focused on supporting the growth and development of the person being mentored, as well as acting as a source of wisdom, teaching and support.
Mentoring requires your investment …
On the other hand, coaching typically involves a shorter-term relationship aimed at strengthening another person’s skills or correcting actions and behaviors that could hinder future development.
Mentoring programs in the farrier industry range from informal formats to more structured programs, such as the one offered by the American Association…