Mentoring & Sponsorship

Mentors and sponsors serve different purposes, but their end goal is the same: to support employees in achieving their goals. Mentors are a source of guidance, feedback and support; sponsors are senior leaders with positions of authority who use their influence to help others advance.

Both are critical in different ways to help break down obstacles to women’s careers, provide them with tools to navigate the workplace and ensure successful transitions to leadership. But both require a different level and type of implication, both from the person asking for support and from the one providing it. In this session, we’ll explore the success factors and benefits of the two types of programmes in supporting and empowering women in their careers, and when to use which.

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Best practices

TOOLS – Sponsorship & Mentoring resources, from Catalyst (July 26, 2018)

What are the best practices around Sponsorship and Mentoring?
“A coach talks to you, a mentor talks with you, and a sponsor talks about you.”
Sponsors, mentors, and coaches can all make a difference in how individuals advance through organizations but there are key differences between each. Coaches provide guidance on development and often help with soft skills, such as active listening. Mentors help their mentees navigate their careers choices through formal or informal mentoring relationships.

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Report – Catalyst Study Shows Sponsorship is Key to Women’s Success from Catalyst (2011)

NEW YORK—For women especially, it takes more than meeting expectations to get noticed in today's workplace. Female employees who work hard and play by the rules are often overlooked when it comes to plum assignments and big promotions. According to Sponsoring Women to Success, the latest in Catalyst’s groundbreaking series of reports on women and sponsorship, ...

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Article – Since #MeToo, the Number of Men Who Are Uncomfortable Mentoring Women Has Tripled from Fortune (2018)

One of the unintended consequences of the #MeToo movement seems to be the alienation of male mentors.
A new set of findings from women’s empowerment non-profit LeanIn.Org and online survey platform SurveyMonkey reveal that, since the media reports of sexual harassment first emerged last fall, ...

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Article – Should mentoring by executives be mandatory? (Dorothy Dalton, August 2018)

Can mentoring reduce employee attrition?
I have recently been approached to act as a mentor to a few younger people at different stages in their professional lives. Apart from the fact that I started to feel really old, ...

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Article – Why Women Need Career Sponsors More Than Mentors by Sava Berhané, Bentley University’s Center for Women and Business (2015)

There are plenty of mentoring programs out there these days for professional women, but they aren’t doing enough. Many are held up as examples of a company’s commitment to diversifying its leadership pipeline, but despite the resources and good intentions behind such programs, they rarely bring about real change.

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Book – Les clefs d’un mentoring réussi, Catherine Thibaux (2019)

Qu’est ce que le mentoring ? A quels types de situations et de besoins répond-il ? Comment le mettre en place ? Derrière la notion de “mentoring”, il y a une démarche d’accompagnement qui a fait ses preuves. En voici quelques exemples concrets, témoignages à l’appui.


Catalyst mentoring benefits tools

Catalyst Formal Mentoring ROI Spreadsheet ToolAdditional Mentoring Benefits

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