The Power of Mentorship

Julia Kanouse

CEO at Illinois Technology Association (ITA)



Mentorship is a time-consuming process with a long return on investment. Why should leaders today be focused on taking part?

Actions taken

"I've had the opportunity to be involved with several organizations that are focused on building and improving mentorship models, in particular for women."

This action inspired me to think about my past mentors and the impact they had on my career. This is why I urge leaders to invest your time and energy in this critical activity. Don't wait for an enterprising, up-and-comer to come to you seeking your advice and expertise. Find the diamond in the rough - the young woman or minority project lead who just killed it - and invest in his or her future.

Lessons learned

We all talk about our desire to diversify our teams, our leaders, our boards. We know that doing so results in greater success – that gender and ethnically diverse groups are more likely to outperform.

Mentorship is an easy place to start. Yes, it takes time, but it doesn't require a monetary investment. Most of today's business leaders attribute their leadership skills to one or more influential mentors. It's a skill that's tough to learn from a book. Helping a young professional, especially from the populations we are trying to elevate, cultivate her leadership abilities and work toward her goals, puts us one step closer to the businesses and community we all want to build.

Source: Exec Spin: The Power of Mentorship

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Julia Kanouse

CEO at Illinois Technology Association (ITA)

Leadership DevelopmentEngineering ManagementLeadership TrainingMentorship ProgramsCareer GrowthWomen in TechDiversity and Inclusion InitiativesDiversity ImpactIndividual Contributor RolesLeadership Roles

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