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Mentorship vs. Sponsorship, And How To Maximize Both

It’s important sometimes to take a moment and look back at what you’ve learned and how you’ve grown. When I started my career I had no idea that I would join a company at an entry-level position and 10 years later become its chief legal officer, eventually moving over to my current role as general counsel at PayPal. Much of this success was built on my own hard work, but I could never have done it without my many mentors and sponsors. I have had both mentors and sponsors throughout my career, and their guidance has had an immense impact on where I am today. Mentors and sponsors serve different purposes, but their end goal is the same: to support you in achieving your goals.

You won’t always know who your sponsors are, but they are people who will advocate for you in the workplace when you need to be more visible. The totality of your legacy relates to your perceived success in a corporation, so you should actively make an effort to build relationships and prove your value-add to your company. It is important to be thoughtful about networking, because hiring decisions are made based on awareness of your contributions to the team and, like it or not, hearsay. You never know who will act as your sponsor, and that the right people will recognize your hard work...

To read the full article by Louise Pentland, visit Forbes.

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