(Re)Building Trust as a New Leader

I was recently discussing with one of my coaching clients* the importance trust plays in leadership, especially when you take over after trust was lost by a predecessor. My client shared with me a time he learned that lesson very well. He had taken over as a director for a large function at his organization and was holding listening sessions with the front line workers. These sessions were part of getting to know his new organization as well as letting them get to know him. What he didn’t expect was the story one of the groups told him about a...
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Questions to Ask When a Mentor Becomes a Sponsor

As a tool for developing talent, mentoring can be so powerful because mentors are so versatile. One mentor can play a multitude of roles for one protégé. A mentor can be seen as a role model, inspiring her protégé by leading by example. She might also act as a sounding board, thought partner, and advisor, giving her protégé the time and space to ponder his world and expand his thinking. She might also provide protection within the organization for protégé, giving him cover for taking risks or helping him recover from mistakes. Finally, she might advocate on his behalf, helping...
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Mentoring During a Pandemic (Notes for COVID-19)

With all of the uncertainty we are facing due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, it is fair to ask why write a piece on mentoring. Everyone is scrambling to understand what they should do during the current situation or how it will affect them and their families. It is because of this uncertainty that mentoring matters. While a mentor may not have any answers to the questions any of us is facing, a mentor can provide some time and space to catch our breath and vent some of the pent-up anxiety COVID-19 is bringing on. To that end, I have...
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The Mentors Way Rule #8: Honor the Journey

This post is the eighth in the series The Mentor’s Way, a set of guides for mentors who want to bring out the best in others. We are all on our own journeys of discovery, learning, and growth. There were parts of your own journey where change was rapid and learning needed to come quickly. On other parts of the journey, you faced difficult choices that needed to be made. There were parts of your journey where you really needed the help and perspective of a mentor. As you worked your way through the difficult parts of your journey, your need for...
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