I like the quote above because it points to both the benefit of experience and the problem with it.

In trading, experience is a great teacher, but trading is hard enough without having to wait thirty years to get the benefit of thirty years worth of experience.

This is where learning from someone else, Mentoring, can give you the benefitgive you the benefit of lessons learned over time, without taking all the time to learn them.

The key is to learn from someone what they can teach you and, at the same time, build your own unique style of trading that is a reflection of your personality.
You cannot learn to trade just by copying someone else.  
When I was in the proprietary trading business, we had two great traders who would allow other traders to sit next to them and copy what the great traders were doing.
Both traders would even announce to the trading room what they were doing as they were doing it.
Unbelievably, none of the traders who sat next to the great traders was ever able to duplicate anything like the success of the great trader.
The fact is that the traders watching barely held their own copying the great trader, even on days when the great trader did spectacularly well.

This lack of success in copying someone else is because the difference between great success and failure in trading is very small.

In order for a trader to be successful, his trading style must originate from within himself.It cannot be the result of rote duplication of what seems to work for someone else.        

I believe in mentoring because I have seen it work in my Electronic Trader Mentoring Program (see Trader Testimonials) and I have benefited throughout my life thanks to a series of people who have given me the advantage of their experience.   


For me, there have been two traders who have had a significant influence on my philosophy of trading. 

One taught me the importance of looking at trading as a business.He taught me that anything less than absolute discipline was unacceptable.By his example, he showed me that setups are less important than money management.

The other taught me about probabilities.He showed me the elegance of simple robust setups.By his example, I learned the value of remaining confident and steadfast in your well-thought-out plan even in adversity.

Each of these world-class traders helped me grow in ways I could not have done on my own.

This is the way mentoring works in trading. 

The mentor gives the trader the benefit of his experience so that the trader does not have to learn everything by the time-consuming process of trial and error. 

For newer traders, a mentor can take years off the time it takes to become proficient in trading. 

Newer traders are bombarded with reasonable-sounding ideas that they have no way to determine which are worth pursuing and which are unlikely to help.A mentor can guide a new trader so that he does not waste time on pointless exercises. 

Importantly, a mentor can help a new trader establish sound fundamentals and good habits from the start of his trading career.

For veteran traders, a good mentor can see things about the veteran’s trading that he may not otherwise notice. 

Having helped dozens of experienced traders, an effective mentor will know how to guide the experienced trader to his greatest gain and his highest potential. 

Additionally, even experienced traders get into a rut and a mentor can be the positive, optimistic voice that helps the veteran trader rejuvenate his trading.

The right mentor can give you an edge that other traders without mentors do not have.  

With me as your mentor, you will get the advantage of my 37 years of experience in futures trading without having to take 37 years to get it. 

Wishing you success in your trading, Jeff

Copyright © 2009 by Jeff Quinto
All rights reserved

Note: There is a print link embedded within this post, please visit this post to print it.