A recent discussion I had with two other female leaders was focused on how women can inspire women. As we talked through areas of development female leaders might be interested in, we also took note that not all female leaders are in the corporate world. Many women are the CEO of their own homes, lead the charge for events that raise thousands for charitable organizations, then you also have the young women of today, the emerging leaders. Who is mentoring them? Who is inspiring them?
As women, especially as leaders, we’re sometimes hard on each other, instead of challenging ourselves to lift each other up. We can’t always change or control everything in our lives or in the lives of others, but we can certainly always give a hand up. Someone said to me recently, “be that one person, to one person.” That statement makes perfect sense. Be a mentor. Make a difference!
If you’re not sure how to be a mentor, simplify the process. Mentoring, as defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is someone who teaches or gives help and advice to less experienced or often younger people. If you look around you, it is not hard to see a woman who simply needs someone to talk to, bounce ideas off or to ask questions in a safe zone, with a trusted ally.
A mentor needs to be willing to share their own experiences to help the other person succeed. Help guide them through a difficult situation, help them set goals and if the person is within your own organization stand behind them when a position opens. A good mentor helps you level set, I entered the office of a trusted ally numerous times, simply to talk through a situation. I knew she would tell me if I was off base, missing something, if I was wrong or if I was right.
The term mutually beneficial comes to mind when I think about mentoring, because it’s a way to give back, to help develop someone else and their career. As a mentor, you are also learning along the way and developing yourself personally and professionally.
Be that one woman who inspires another woman. Ask yourself, who is my go to? If you have one great, if you don’t find one and challenge yourself to be a “go to” for someone else. Be a mentor. Make a difference!