Do you feel that mentoring is crucial to career success? I do. My career has been enhanced and advanced thanks to the mentoring I received. Developing new knowledge, skills, and attitudes is easier when a mentor shows you the way. However, although my mentors were phenomenal in so many ways, I also felt a disconnect-all of my mentors were men. I was mentored from a male perspective of playing by the rules. And while these men embraced workplace parity and wanted to see their employees thrive, I lacked the opportunity to learn from, and be mentored by women who had achieved success in their careers by changing the rules.
Drop the Dagger
Early in my career, the women in leadership positions seemed to have a dagger between their teeth. They had clambered and ascended over the backs of others, especially other women. It was as if they had taken on the worst behaviors. It was painful to witness, and, to this day, I view it as an abject denial of our strength as women to succeed on our own terms. Why should women fight each other when they can help one another? There’s room for all of us, and we’re stronger together. We all win when we’re on the same team. This is not only crucial in the retention of top talent, but also throughout the entire employee hiring process. One of the best recruitment strategies for hiring good employees is to know how to attract quality candidates. Build an environment where they will want to work. Click To Tweet
Strength and Resilience
In lacking female mentors, I instead found female peers who were ready to encircle one another with encouragement and collective experience. We supported and nurtured each other to move into leadership positions. Through learned insights, we lent a hand up the ladder while sharing our challenges and obstacles. My female peers and I found strength and power in each other, and they were invaluable in helping us all ascend. Together, we paved a new road for younger women who lead by embracing who they are, celebrating common ground, and recognizing our uniquely-female qualities. Click To TweetThis atmosphere is scarce in so many workplaces today. When recruiting candidates, it’s easier to excel at diversity during talent acquisition by proving the workplace is one where women can, and are thriving. One of the simplest ways to recruit employees is not to have to do it at all.
Respect and Communication
A woman’s approach to given situations is often quite different from a man’s. Women mentoring women is the ideal resource to foster skills, vanquish doubts, and enhance potential. With guidance and encouragement, there is exposure to another way, or better alternatives to achieve goals. It’s the equivalent of a lightning bolt or an epiphany. The essential components are sharing and accepting new ideas, giving and receiving constructive criticism, and shifting the thought process. Click To Tweet
Women mentoring women has some compelling benefits, especially during the employee hiring process. The experiences of women in the workplace have nuances and aspects that have little cognizance or recognition from our male peers. Click To Tweet Female mentors share a common experiential baseline with the women they guide. We get it, from an unbalanced work environment, to not being heard. Click To Tweet Our shared attitudinal tendencies in life and work promote an honest and open relationship. These are the building blocks for strong mentoring support and the avenue to achieving full potential.
Every day I see women stepping up to engage and provide mentoring to other women. Women who have forged the path forward have the power to make a real difference for the next generation. It’s awesome. Sharing our insights and hard-learned lessons with younger women take all of us to a new level of parity. Through our mentoring efforts we further disrupt the status quo and change the rules.
Effective mentors give you the opportunity to tilt your paradigm and see around it. Female leaders and champions acquire their strength through a prism that encompasses divergent approaches and perspectives. We have the ability to establish an opportunity for transformation, for all women to break down the barriers and overcome the obstacles that they’ll face during their climb to the top. Click To Tweet
Change the Rules
I believe it’s the responsibility of female leaders to mentor young women to successfully navigate the challenges we have already faced and conquered. We must enthusiastically fill in skill gaps, foster a culture of growth, and drive impact for women in the pursuit of greater responsibilities, recognition, and leadership roles. Working together, we can lift all women up and grind the glass ceiling into dust. Click To Tweet
Do you have any suggestions on how to encourage female mentorship in the workplace? Do you know a woman currently seeking job placement who would love to work for an organization that had women mentoring women? Did you have an experience with talent recruitment or HR that got it totally wrong when it came to mentorship for women? Do you have any tips or advice on trying to find the right job for women who want to be mentored by other women? Share helpful hints, what you liked, didn’t like, and what you would like to see done in the future in the comments below. We look forward to hearing from you, and be sure to connect with us on Social Media!