Mentors provide expertise to less experienced individuals to help them advance their careers, enhance their education, and build their networks. In many different arenas people have benefited from being part of a mentoring relationship: Freddie Laker mentored Richard Branson, Bach mentored Mozart, Dr. Dre mentored Eminem, Aristotle mentored Alexander the Great, and Obi-wan Kenobi mentored Anakin Skywalker.
Mentorship: a Valuable 2-way Conversation
Suppose that mentorship could be monetized like financial instruments. Within the structure of an innovation economy specified by The Ingenesist Project; a knowledge inventory, a percentile search engine, and an innovation bank will match the most worthy student to the most worthy mentor in the respective market structure. The mentor would take an equity position in the protégé, not unlike taking a stock in a corporation.
For example: A single mid-career mentor could take on 10 protégés with an option to exercise, say, 1% of the students future salary for every year mentoring upon predetermined retirement date. Say that the average mentorship lasts 10 years. Likewise, each of the protégés also becomes a mentor taking on 10 protégés of their own. The Master mentor will collect 1% of the revenue that each of the 100 sub-protégés provide to their middle mentors per year.
The Educational Pyramid Scheme
If each protégé becomes at least as successful on average as the mentor, the master mentor can collect the equivalent of their average salary for the duration of their retirement. If each of the protégés become equally effective mentors, then the master mentor can double their average salary for the duration of their retirement. A third tier adds another salary to the master mentor.
This is what actually happens in an informal way within companies, government, and Jedi Knighthood; the exception is that social media will enable this to occur outside the construct of a corporation – and such.
Game Theory for the Rest of Us
An interesting social game emerges: It becomes the best interest of the mentor that each of their protégés is successful in their field and practice high integrity. It is in the best interest of the mentee to learn as much as they can and become as proficient as they can. It is the best interest for mentees to pick appropriate mentors and it is in the best interest for mentors to take on appropriate mentees. It is efficient for mentees to form a social network among themselves and for Master Mentors to form a network among themselves. A multiplier effect surges with cross-mentoring.
In aggregate, it is in the best interest for the membership in the social network to cooperate rather than compete because their income would ultimately benefit less from competition than from cooperation.
2.3 Trillion Dollars Market
The American Public education system is in disarray. Standardized education defies the diversity of the country. Teacher’s pay has been stagnant. Curriculum takes years to respond to new knowledge. Recent McKinsey research finds that a persistent gap in academic achievement between children in the United States and their counterparts in other countries deprived the US economy of as much as $2.3 trillion in economic output in 2008
None of this has anything to do with the dreams of our children. None of this has anything to do with the intellect, motivation, and perseverance of our kids. It has everything to do with Political stalemate and failure of the economic system. All children can achieve their dreams, and ours, if there were a market for mentors.