Are the good old fashioned days of finding and keeping a mentor gone?  We ask because it appears that more and more would-be advice-givers are charging for that time spent exchanging thoughts over a cup of coffee. Turns out that members of the creative class of workers feel their every moment is of some actual value.  So do you wanna pay up?  Or are you just wasting their time?

Steve Cony, president of the marketing consulting firm Communications Counselors in suburban New York City, says he's not opposed to picking up a small fee when it comes to doling out wisdom.  He explains, “I offer free advice, when appropriate, but I feel it should be my call, not theirs. When someone asks to pick my brain, I bristle. My brain is how I earn my living — would you ask a plumber to unclog a drain for free?”

Thus the fee-for-advice scenario, which some don't mind participating in.  Marissa Vicario, a Manhattan-based certified health coach, says, "As my business has become more successful and my public persona has increased, I’ve increasingly received emails from others in my field who essentially want to do the same thing I’m doing. While I love mentoring, I value my time and expertise and have started to charge. I’ve found that those who value my time and expertise are happy to pay the fee."

But there should be a few exemptions, says Kate White, former editor of Cosmopolitan.  The magazine pro feels that even those who charge should have at least some people whom they always make time for, for free.  She explains, "These might be relatives, or people you’ve worked with in the past, or people you know will return the favor. When you know your list, it’s easier to create guidelines for how to handle those who aren’t on it. Maybe it’s denying the request, maybe it’s changing the coffee date to an email back-and-forth."


Source: The New York Post