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Star’s Corner: Put Your Mentoring Mojo to Work

January 16, 2014 | Categories: Career, Star's Corner | No Comments

 “Our American family is bound together by caring individuals who make it their mission to serve others. During National Mentoring Month, we pay special tribute to the men and women who enrich the lives of our young people and fortify the unbreakable bonds between one generation and the next. A supportive mentor can mean the difference between struggle and success.” —President Barack Obama

Life is an odyssey  an ever-twisting road of adventure on our path to success. Having a trusted mentor dispensing wisdom along the way provides the guidance to overcome challenge and adversity, while inspiring, teaching, and assisting in our overall career and personal success. This is the truth as I know it because I have lived it!

You know her as the grand dame of journalistic TV news, the woman who rose to career success in an era when women were relegated to answering phones, the influential commentator who created the best daytime TV talk show, The View, of which I am proud to say I served as one of the original panel hosts. I know her as broadcasting mentor, confidante, my teacher and friend – the legendary Barbara Walters. “BW” (as I affectionately nicknamed her) and I have weathered many public storms and still our private friendship is stronger than ever.  How lucky and blessed am I?! Extremely  as I have had two mentors in my life, the other… the best legal strategist and trial attorney I ever knew; the late “If the glove don’t fit,” Johnnie Cochran, my legal mentor. Johnnie and I became good friends and I had the privilege and honor of delivering a eulogy at his funeral. My mom named me “Starlet,” however anyone who has followed my career knows that these two people created that which is “Star Jones.” They are true mentors and I forever pay tribute to them.


Barbara Walters and me


The late Johnnie Cochran

This January during National Mentoring Month, I urge all of you to give back and become a mentor to a future leader of tomorrow. Whether a young girl in your community or a professional woman on her way up the corporate ladder, your trusted guidance, knowledge and support will make a difference in their lives forever – I’m living proof of that. Remember:  Your NAPW Local Chapter and Girls Inc. are excellent resources, offering many opportunities for you to become a mentor. And, when you do, because I know you will, here are a few tips to get you going.

Stop. Can You Hear Them?
If you’re doing all the talking, you won’t. Being a good conversationalist means being a good listener. As a mentor, active listening is one of the most important skills to have because it establishes a rapport and creates a positive, accepting experience, allowing trusted communication between you and your mentee.

Share your personal and career goals with your mentee. Help them identify their own goals and how they can achieve career success. Develop your mentee’s goals by explaining, providing examples, demonstrating processes and asking thought-provoking questions. Make sure to discuss specific examples about how you achieved your career success.

In You They Trust
Build trust with your mentee by keeping communication and conversations confidential. Always show interest and support, honor your meetings and speak the truth. Remember trust takes time – no rushing!

Yes, you have the power to guide a young girl to an incredible future, to influence the career success of a professional businesswoman and be the mentor that helps them go further than they ever dreamed because YOU knew they could…

That’s mentoring mojo!

Do you have a mentor… What’s the most valuable lesson you have learned from them? If you have a mentee, how will you help them achieve success? Tell us in the comments below.

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