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Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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Goodbye Gordon Gekko. Wall Street Needs Real Mentors.

July 16, 2012, 12:00 AM

What can you expect to get from a mentor?

A good one might advise you not to wear a polyester suit to an interview at Goldman Sachs. He might also help guide you through the moral and ethical mine field that is Wall Street. At the end of the day, you might very well feel like you owe all of your success to your mentor, and the only way you can possibly repay that person is to become a mentor yourself. 

What's the Big Idea?

Anthony Scaramucci gained a lot of attention for asking President Obama at a town hall meeting "when are we going to stop whacking at the Wall Street pinate?" And yet, Scaramucci has plenty of scorn for "the 3 percent," those bad eggs who muck up Wall Street, the place where Scaramucci and many of his peers first went to seek their fortunes after seeing Oliver Stone's film, Wall Street. That's right. In fact, Gordon Gekko, whose oft-cited motto is "greed is good," was Scaramucci's role model. It's not so hard to see why, as Michael Douglas's character was a paragon of power and style. But that is not to say that Scaramucci embraced Gekko's "greed is good" world view. To the contrary. 

"Even today," Scaramucci writes in his book Goodbye Gordon Gekko: How to Find Your Fortune Without Losing Your Soul, many of his peers recite lines from Wall Street, "wear the suspenders, and ultimately try to act like its most unsavory character, Gordon Gekko." 

"Greed is fundamentally bad," Scaramucci says. And runaway greed on Wall Street is what prompted him to write the aforementioned book which is ostensibly devoted to mentoring. Scaramucci was lucky to have a very good mentor himself.

Watch the video here:

What's the Significance?

No matter what field you choose to enter -- whether it is finance or the arts -- you will benefit greatly from the  guidance of a mentor. 

In the slideshow below, Big Think has compiled some of the most famous mentoring relationships, both in fiction and real life. What makes a great mentor and what are you looking to get out of a mentoring relationship?

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Follow Daniel Honan on Twitter @Daniel Honan


Goodbye Gordon Gekko. Wall ...

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