Neha Bhargava stated, “mentors see magic in someone.” She imparted her passion for mentorship and shared these points:
- Being a good mentor means pushing someone in the right direction and the right way. Focus on growth.
- Mentors can also get a lot from the relationship; you can become a stronger leader.
- Neha is looking forward to helping the WIA community build a powerful network and help people with their career paths.
Jamie Thomas explained that organizations are deeply under-optimized in how they get their best talent to connect. There are hidden opportunities for innovation, problem solving, personal development and inclusion because the right people aren’t talking to each other. This affects both individual and organizational progress.
Cophi, helps individuals and organizations better connect through a combination of machine learning, network analysis and behavioral science. Their values survey measures compatibility based on the Schwartz theory of basic human values: Openness to change, self-transcendence, conservation and self-enhancement. Matches are then made based on aligned values and learning objectives.
Annabel Jack underscored the need to think about what you want to get out of the process, whether you are a mentor or mentee. She shared three key tips:
- Know what you both want to achieve. Do the work to plan the work, and then work the plan. This needs to be especially driven by a mentee, but not exclusively. If you’re a mentee, you might have a very clear goal in mind like, “I want to get a promotion, I want to move into another team, I want to grow in confidence generally.” Think about this in advance of your first meeting. But as a mentor, you should also go into it knowing what you want to get from it. For example, it could be, “I want to really improve my comms skills.”
- Think about the set-up of your time that will help you reach the goals. What does that look like? Is it meeting in person? How often? Is it sending notes after? Set this up as a contract. Write it down.
- Care. Care deeply about the outcome. You need to have a personal interest in your growth and other people’s growth. Like any relationship, it is two ways. Have honest and open conversations. Give feedback. Ask direct questions. Listen. Don’t let it just be transactional—the more enriched, the better the outcome.