Yes there are real ladies

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To better understand why, the authors conducted in-depth interviews with 40 participants in a mentoring program at a large multinational. All mentoring is not created equal, they discovered. Only sponsorship involves advocacy for advancement.

The interviews and survey alike indicate that, compared with their male peers, high-potential women are overmentored, undersponsored, and not advancing in their organizations. Without sponsorship, women not only are less likely than men to be appointed to top roles but may also be more reluctant to go for them.

Organizations such as Deutsche Bank, Unilever, Sodexo, and IBM Europe have established sponsorship programs to facilitate the promotion of high-potential women. Programs that get clarify and communicate their goals, match sponsors and mentees on the basis of those goals, coordinate corporate and regional efforts, train sponsors, and hold those sponsors able.

Nathalie all names in this article are disguiseda senior marketing manager at a multinational consumer goods company and a contender for chairman in her country, was advised by her boss to raise her profile locally. Recently matched with a high-level mentor through a companywide program, she had barely completed the lengthy prework ased for that when she received an invitation to an exclusive executive-training program for high potentials—for which she was asked to fill out more self-assessments and career-planning documents.

I hate to say it, but I am so busy. I have three .

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I am going to be in a wheelchair by the time I get to be vice president, because they are going to drill me into the ground with all these extra-credit projects. When she was nominated for a high-potential program, her boss complained that the corporate team was interfering with the mentoring operation he was already running in the region. Julie also took part in a less formal scheme pairing junior and senior finance leaders. Nathalie, Amy, and Julie are not atypical. But does all this effort translate into actual promotions and appointments for both sexes?

The s suggest not. For more findings, see Nancy M. Yet among that same group, more women than men report having mentors. To better understand what is going on, we conducted in-depth interviews with 40 high-potential men and women including Nathalie, Amy, and Julie who were selected by their large multinational company to participate in its high-level mentoring program.

We also analyzed the survey to uncover any differences in how men and women are mentored and in the effects of their mentoring on advancement. Last, we compared those data with the of a survey of the same population, in which we asked participants to report on promotions and lateral moves since All mentoring is not Yes there are real ladies equal, we discovered. There is a special kind of relationship—called sponsorship—in which the mentor goes beyond giving feedback and advice and uses his or her influence with senior executives to advocate for the mentee.

Our interviews and surveys alike suggest that high-potential women are overmentored and undersponsored relative to their male peers—and that they are not advancing in their organizations. Furthermore, without sponsorship, women not only are less likely than men to be appointed to top roles but may also be more reluctant to go for them. We find this to be true even after controlling for the fact that women start in lower-level positions post-MBA.

The two groups have had similar s of lateral moves Yes there are real ladies job asments in different functions, deed to give high potentials exposure to various parts of the business. But men were receiving promotions after the lateral moves; for the women, the moves were offered in lieu of advancement.

Of course, the ultimate test of the power of mentoring would be to show that its presence during the survey is a statistically ificant predictor of promotion by the time of the survey. Women who had found mentors through formal programs had received more promotions by than women who had found mentors on their own by a ratio of almost three to two. Among all participants who had found mentors on their own, the men received more promotions than the women again, by a ratio of almost three to two. For more on how companies are providing sponsorship, go to www.

Many women explain how mentoring relationships have helped them understand themselves, their preferred styles of operating, and ways they might need to change as they move up the leadership pipeline. By contrast, men tell stories about how their bosses and informal mentors have helped them plan their moves and take charge in new roles, in addition to endorsing their authority publicly. As one male mentee recounts, in a typical comment:.

You can do it. Now we need to find you a job: What are the tricks we need to figure out? You have to talk to this person and to that one and that one. My boss was a network type of a person….

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Before he left, he put me in touch with the head of supply chain, Yes there are real ladies is how I managed to Yes there are real ladies this job. Just when women are most likely to need sponsorship—as they shoot for the highest-level jobs—they may be least likely to get it. Paradoxically, just when women are most likely to need sponsorship—as they shoot for the highest-level jobs—they may be least likely to get it.

In a study of top-performing CEOs, for instance, the women were nearly twice as likely as the men to have been hired from outside the company see Morten T. Impatient with the speed at which women are reaching the top levels, many leading-edge companies we work with are converging on a new set of strategies to ensure that high-potential women are sponsored for the most-senior posts.

Those principles can make all the difference between a sponsorship program that gets and one that simply looks great on paper. Often the best mentors—those who provide caring and altruistic advice and counseling—are not the highfliers who have the influence to pull people up through the system. Employees expecting one form of support can be very disappointed when they get the other.

And companies hoping to do A can find themselves with a program that instead does B. Companies need to make a sharper distinction between mentoring and sponsorship. Only sponsors actively advocate for advancement. Analysis of hundreds of studies shows that people derive more satisfaction from mentoring but need sponsorship. Without sponsorship, a person is likely to be overlooked for promotion, regardless of his or her competence and performance—particularly at mid-career and beyond, when competition for promotions increases.

Deutsche Bank responded by creating a sponsorship program aimed at asing more women to critical posts. Now, one-third of the participants are in larger roles than they were in a year ago, and another third are deemed ready by senior management and HR to take on broader responsibilities. When the objective of a program is career advancement for high potentials, mentors and sponsors are typically selected on the basis of position power.

When the goal is personal development, matches are made to increase the likelihood of frequent contact and good chemistry. Centrally run mentoring programs that sidestep direct bosses can inadvertently communicate that diversity is an HR problem that requires no effort from the front lines. Coordination of corporate and local efforts is especially important when it comes to senior-level participants in whom companies invest ificantly.

Effective sponsorship does not stand alone but is one facet of a comprehensive program that includes performance evaluation, training and development, and succession planning—all of which add up to more than the sum of the parts. The Deutsche Bank sponsorship program for female managing directors, for instance, is one piece of a highly tailored initiative that also involves leadership evaluations, external coaches, and leadership workshops.

When you layer on top some of the complexities of sponsor relationships between senior men and junior women, you easily have a recipe for misunderstanding. The strategies and tactics that helped the men progress in their careers may not be appealing or even feasible for the women. The strategies that help men progress in their careers may not be appealing or feasible for women. A classic case is the challenge of developing a credible leadership style in a context where most of the successful role models are male.

Eagly and Linda L. Male mentors who have never faced this dilemma themselves may be hard-pressed to provide useful advice. You are too brutal, too demanding, too tough, too clear, and not participative enough. Male sponsors can be taught to recognize such gender-related dilemmas. To fully reap the benefits of sponsorship, companies must hold sponsors able. At IBM Europe, a sponsorship program deed for senior women below the executive level aims to promote selected participants within one year. Sponsors, all vice presidents or general managers, are charged with making sure that participants are indeed ready within a year.

Failure to obtain a promotion is viewed as a failure of the sponsor, not of the candidate. Although our data show that formal programs can be quite effective in getting women promoted, a potential pitfall is their fixed duration. Sponsors typically declare victory and move on after their high potentials advance—just when they need help to successfully take charge in their new roles. With that extra bit of attention, sponsors could help deliver not just promotions but strong transitions. And the survey responses, gathered from men and women at hundreds of firms, also provide strong evidence for gender difference in mentoring outcomes.

Some improvements—such as supportive bosses and inclusive cultures—are a lot harder to mandate than formal mentoring programs but essential if those programs are to have their intended effects. Clearly, however, the critical first step is to stop overmentoring and start able sponsoring for both sexes. You have 1 free article s left this month.

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Yes there are real ladies

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Why Men Still Get More Promotions Than Women