When you look at the statistics and consider how unrepresented women are in leadership positions within their companies you begin to understand why an organization like CanWIT exists and why is necessary. Strong mentorship can provide an advantage for any professional at any career level, but for female professionals, especially those in leadership positions, a mentor can make all the difference. Such advice can help in overcoming the many gender-related challenges that women still face in the modern place.
Speaking from my own personal experience, I came to Canada fifteen years ago, and at the beginning it was difficult for me to find a job where I can fully develop my potential – language barriers, lack of connections etc. prevent me to progress in life so having some mentors helped to overcome these challenges and realize my potential. In my own personal life, mentorship has shaped my career to what it is today – it is no doubt that professional mentorship is an accelerator of career development.
I have been extremely fortunate with the mentoring relationships that I’ve had throughout my career. Not only have my mentors been able to point me in the right directions, but they’ve been able to help me develop the skills needed to confidently take that next step on my career path and in some cases help me realize that the skills were already there. I know that my success has increased as a result of their involvement.
Isaac Newton once wrote in a letter to Robert Hoke: “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.” This is one of my favorite quotes because it explains the key to success: You only succeed when you have a great mentor. You only succeed when you work and learn from the best. You only succeed when you build on each other’s strengths.
For me mentorship is a fantastic way to expand your network and build new relationships. It is also a great way to think ‘out of the box’ in sharing ideas with other professionals in a casual atmosphere.
For young women in Tech, mentors also help you to transition from the classroom to the boardroom as they share real-life experiences so this helps mentees to create a better path for success.
I am thrilled to be able to pay that forward, and am very excited about the opportunities that CanWIT provides so that I continue my learning as a mentee and serve as a mentor in the future.