“A mentor is someone who allows you to see hope inside yourself.” -Oprah Winfrey
Mentorship is important to reach success. Don’t believe me? Look at the history of every successful man or woman……. There was a mentor in their corner guiding or supporting them every step of the way.
To best describe a mentor, think of them as friends, advisors, sometimes like second mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, aunts, and uncles. A mentor for some can even be a celebrity they’ve never met before but are inspired by their success. Mentors are there to guide us in life and teach lessons they’ve learned along the way. In my opinion, we all need mentors but specifically minorities that indeed struggle especially when climbing the ladders of the corporate world, or even taking the entrepreneurship route.
People of color are faced with a plethora number of challenges that may include going into offices and being the only one that looks like them, dealing with microaggressions at work, and overwhelmed about being trying to be perfect. Having a mentor that looks like you and who has faced those same challenges makes a difference in a person’s life by giving them confidence. It also stimulates personal growth needed to overcome obstacles. This is why Mentors of Color was created.
Mentors of Color was created to enable relationships to happen and enable our network of mentors to share experiences. Although the focus is on helping all people of color, MOC primarily sheds light on the lack of leadership and guidance in the tech industry, without excluding other industries as well. Over the years, many big named companies have made headlines for the lack of diversity and inclusion which hinders many people from gaining opportunities to start and grow their careers.
MOC focuses on “light-weight mentoring” which means mentors don’t need to have specific training or practice, it’s “come as you are” with your experience to help others. Mentors of Color also encourages mentors and mentees to determine the length of their own relationship without pressuring mentors and mentees to meet on a scheduled basis. The company has three missions which are visibility- to be seen and heard, connection – to belong, to feel at home, and knowledge – to grow with confidence. The company has professionals from different locations and tech backgrounds.
To sign up as a mentor or mentee each applicant expresses their professional and personal interests, and they can be matched with others who have similarities. We currently have mentors who are CEOs of tech companies, Software Engineers, Project Managers, Marketers etc. An example of the power of the company can be shown through an experience of a mentee who joined the program seeking advice and guidance for his tech career. With the words of wisdom, the knowledge, confidence builder from his mentor he is now a Scrum Master, a profession he didn’t realize he could attain. It takes a community to come together and to pull each other up to continue opening the doors for all people of color.
If you’re interested in becoming a mentor of mentee apply on our website. Start making a difference today.