Lift As You Climb
I’m often asked by Latino professionals what the ONE activity they can do to help increase the representation of Latino talent in leadership positions. Obviously, there are many things you and I could suggest. However, when it involves assisting Latino professionals, I always recommend mentoring. Thinking back to the start of my career, I found it challenging to find a mentor that understood my background and experiences. Given my non-traditional educational and career path, I probably wouldn’t have found anyone!
Aside from the counsel, support, and guidance, mentors can also lift as they climb.
Remember that mentoring doesn’t simply involve encouragement; it must also involve career (and leadership) development. Although some organizations have made diversity a priority, many have yet to strike a diverse balance at their senior-levels. There are many reasons for the lack of representation, one of which can be associated with mentoring. People that reach leadership positions are there in part because of a mentor: someone that’s “connected.” Research demonstrates that Hispanics and other minorities are not mentored as much as other groups. This is primarily due to the lack of diversity within senior-level positions. And so it goes – the continual loop.
So ask yourselves: have you created opportunities for Latinos? Have you made the effort to lift as you climb?