This month, we celebrated World Mentoring Day, and I took a moment to reflect and delve into the profound power that mentorship holds. Think of an explorer embarking on a voyage to new horizons. The vast sea before them is filled with both opportunities and challenges. In this journey, the explorer requires a compass — a trusted tool to navigate through uncertainty. That compass, in the voyage of life, is a mentor. My own journey offers a testament to the transformative nature of mentorship.
Growing up and for the majority of my career, I found myself navigating without much guidance. But everything changed when I connected with Leaders Plus, a support network for career-minded individuals. I encountered Laura Harrison through that network, who would become the mentor I never knew I needed. Laura didn't just offer advice; she became the lens that allowed me to see myself in a new light. She identified my blind spots, recognized my potential, and pinpointed gaps I was unaware of. Laura's guidance was instrumental in helping me evolve into Rajani 2.0. She made me realize my leadership strengths, addressed the areas I can look to grow, and elevated my ambitions.
Laura's mentorship empowered me to break the glass ceiling as an Asian woman in Engineering. But my journey with Laura did more than enhance my professional trajectory. It kindled in me a deep-seated desire to give back. Drawing inspiration from my firsthand experience as well as my learning from the Leaders Who Coach program, I took on the mantle of mentorship myself, coaching other women in tech through the Women Who Code London's Mentorship program. My aim? To exponentially amplify the invaluable guidance I received from Laura and support other women in shattering their own ceilings.
Among the many valuable lessons about mentoring, I learned it’s important to:
Celebrate the mentors who've acted as our compasses every day and on days like World Mentoring Day. Take it as a call to action to perhaps become compasses ourselves, aiding others in their unique journeys. The voyage of life is so much more fulfilling when we sail together.