Gould spoke about a current mentor she has who really pushes her to
stretch outside of her comfort zone.
She said,“ She seems to recognize that
extra mile that people will go if she just
pushes or nudges them.” It is a good
lesson – people will rise to a challenge.
Mosley focused on the role one
mentor played in helping her learn
to promote herself. She pointed out
that she had to learn that there is
much more that goes into becoming a
partner at a law firm beyond doing a
good job and working hard. She credits
her mentor with helping her figure out
what those other elements were in her
law firm and, in particular, with helping
her learn how to self-promote. Mosley
said that she thinks that she, like a lot
of women, “always undersold herself”
and having a mentor who challenged
her and forced her to recognize her
own value was a turning point for her.
Dahlman noted that she was fortunate to have mentors who helped “put
her in the way of opportunity.” This
sentiment was echoed by a number of
the other women as well.
Berne values the role her mentors
have played as a sounding board for
her. Robinson agreed and noted that
her mentors were also very skilled at
holding her accountable in a nonthreatening way. There seems to be
unanimous agreement that good
mentors provide a healthy dose of
candor in their relationships with their
Robinson pointed out that mentors have helped her navigate the
organizational structure of her firm.
She said, “My most effective mentors
have taken the corporate message, and
added a personal context to it – they
make the message meaningful in a way
that is individualized to a particular
person or situation.” Understanding
and interpreting the messaging behind
the message—sometimes we all need a
little help with that.
Lastly, I asked each of the women to
share something with us—a piece of
advice, an observation, or a lesson they
have learned along the way.