Sunday, January 30, 2011

Supersizing Our Mentoring Efforts

Supersizing Our Mentoring Efforts

By Natasha L. Foreman, MBA

According to the Harvard Business Review a Catalyst survey shows that more women have mentors than men but they are paid $4,600 less in their first post-MBA jobs than their male counterparts; they hold lower positions, and feel less satisfied in their career than men. After an interview of 40 women who participated in a mentoring program through a large multinational corporation, the researchers discovered that women in general are over-mentored, under-sponsored, and advance slower within their organizations than men.

Women have mentors galore but these mentorships are not translating and evolving into sponsorships where advancement and advocacy is directly linked. According to the article, without proper sponsorship women will be less likely to be appointed to top roles or even consider striving for them. Sponsorship is about game-shifting, meeting the right people, making the right connections, finding out the right solutions, and forging relationships with sponsors who will help you through the tangled corporate web and see you to the top.

There is a big difference between a mentor giving you a pep talk, sharing enlightening and uplifting stories, and a sponsor helping to guide and open doors for you. You must transition your mentorships into sponsorships if you want to play on the same field with the 'guys'. You must expand your horizons and your concept of mentoring if you seek higher pay, advancements, and a more rewarding and fulfilling career.

Natasha L. Foreman, MBA is a Business and Entertainment Consultant, Certified Personal Fitness Trainer, and Blogger.  She has been a YWTF-ATL advocate at large since 2010 and she recently joined the YWTF-ATL Board of Directors as the Communications and Marketing Director. Natasha can be reached via email at


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