According to an article by Kailynn Bowling on Forbes.com, mentorships are more important than ever to women in the workplace.
Mentoring helps women ideate about what they will become. For women to be more empowered in the workplace, it’s crucial to have structured mentorships where women can learn from each other.
- Kailynn Bowling, Why Female Mentorship In The Workplace Is More Important Than Ever
Mentors can lead professional growth, share company culture and ideology as well as vouch and campaign for someone looking to advance up the corporate ladder. The perks of a mentor are clear, however, finding a mentor can be difficult and sometimes even scary.
So how do we go about finding someone to help us grow, inspire us and let us pick their brains all in a culture of screens and solitude? Well, here are some tips.
- Ask your company if there is a mentorship program in place or if this is something they would like to start. There is no better way to make a change than be the change. Start by sending a simple email to your human resources department highlighting the benefits of a mentorship program. If you are comfortable, include some areas of growth specific to your company.
- Reach out to a higher level woman in your company or industry and simply ask. Forge a relationship, find commonality, and most importantly, be honest. While not everyone is looking to taking on a mentee, most people will be impressed by your dedication to your growth and may be able to introduce you to someone who is looking to be a mentor.
- If you aren’t currently in a company environment or have no one to reach out at your company, utilize Linkedin and networking groups! Do some research on potential mentors and try to build a relationship. Share what you admire about them and any similarities you have in terms of their career and where you see yours going.
- Focus on communication! Get out there and start communicating in person. Work on setting up in actual meetings and strategy sessions. Don’t be scared to ask for what you need / areas you would like to focus on for growth. Start by doing an analysis on yourself so you can go into this opportunity prepared. Ask friends and trusted colleagues if you need to in order to get some insight into areas of improvement.
- Be fearless - or at least fake it until you make it. Look, it can be hard and awkward to ask someone for help. It can be weird to tell them what you want and that you are willing to go for it then hoping they sign on to help you. Take a deep breath, send that email or make that call; then send another one and another one until you find someone that you can learn from.
In six months, the only thing guaranteed is that you are going to be six months older. Why not use that time to move ahead in your career as much as you can?
Reaching out to potential mentors and eventually finding one to help you on your career path can make a huge difference in your climb to the top. Go out there, send that email, see what happens!
Share below any experiences you have with either being a mentor or a mentee!