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DO WOMEN MAKE BETTER COACHES AND MENTORS?
As women's month comes to an end, we explore how women
can empower themselves through skills development.

At a seminar earlier this month focussed on women in leadership, the consensus was reached that most successful women rate having a mentor very high in the battle to reach the top. This raises the question: just how many of these mentors were women?

According to the American Psychological Association women do in fact make better mentors and coaches! The unfortunate fact, however, is that there are not very many around. "The women in leadership roles, and who also have family responsibilities, are the psychologists many female students want to emulate," says Carol Williams, former chair of the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS). But these women also seem to be those who have the least time available to them to be mentors.

The good news is that enough research exists to prove that the gender of the mentor is not as important has having a mentor.

One of the most difficult parts of the mentoring relationship is finding the right person. First, you have to know what you need. Career guru Richard Bolles suggests making a detailed list of what it takes to succeed in your chosen profession - knowledge, skills (both technical and managerial), personality traits and experience - and then list what you already have. This is a simple gap analysis and will help you with your personal development plan too!

WOMEN VS. MEN: THE SKILLS DEVELOPMENT SHOWDOWN
Issued by Trinitas Consulting

"The advancement of women in South Africa is no longer an option, it is an urgent requirement." - Kunyalala Maphisa, president Businesswomen's Association of South Africa.

In the past, the business world has often been described as a 'man's world' and many believe that this is still the case. But are women using this as a scapegoat to cover up for their own lack of ambition or fear of success? Are women standing behind this old adage to protect themselves from being hurt should they attempt to advance their careers and fail?

Gizelle McIntyre, director of The Institute of People Development, feels that more often than not women themselves actually put up barriers to their own success (whether as a result of their fear of failure or a lack of self-confidence) rather than their lack of advancement being as a result of male bias. McIntyre suggests that women should take action in their own lives to advance their careers, and offers some advice as to how to do so.

Read More
"Most of us have trouble juggling. The woman who says she doesn't is someone whom I admire but have never met." Barbara Walters, broadcast journalist and author
WHY HAVE A MENTOR?

There are many reasons to have a mentor in your career (and personal life), here are 3:

1. A MENTOR LEADS THE WAY
- often, because they have been there already

2. A MENTOR SEES OUR POTENTIAL
- because they no longer feel the need to prove themselves at the expense of others, they are quick to point your potential out to you

3. A MENTOR ISN'T AFRAID TO ASK THE HARD QUESTIONS
- they have been through it before and know that you need to be honest with yourself!

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN
COACHING AND MENTORING?
Coaching:
Coaching is focused on an organisation's key assets; its people – both as individuals and as team members. A coach works with you, using your key performance indicators/technical skills. The focus is on the skill needed to perform your job better.
Mentoring:
A mentor suggests how you hone your business skills and performance, offers solutions and gives analysis and input on how to improve your business acumen. A mentor will bring their own substantial career track record to the table and will utilise this when discussing good businesses strategy and practice.
Thus the question again; "do women make better coaches and mentors?" Instead of trying to give a definitive answer, perhaps the answer lies in applying and utilising the skills and then answering it for yourself!
RESOURCES
Visit the IPeDia Reference Library, which holds a collection of case studies, research articles, policy reviews, good practice guides, useful opinion articles, theories, models and techniques, full books, legislation and regulations that support quality learning and development in Southern Africa. Access the library from the IPD website.
"My will shall shape the future. Whether I fail or succeed shall be no one's doing but my own. I am the force. I can clear any obstacle before me or I can be lost in the maze. My choice. My responsibility. Win or lose; only I hold the key to my destiny." Elaine Maxwell, Author
PROJECTS COMING UP IN SEPTEMBER
· Needs Analysis and Skills Planning Course mid-September in Namibia for the Nambian De Beers

· Management RPL and Top up for BHP Billiton Disabled learners, also mid-September

· Heritage day:
we will commemorating our 13 years of Occupationally Directed Education and Training

· Eskom - Needs Analysis:
Portfolio submissions are going well and we would like to thank the learners for doing a great job

· Nestle Estcourt - Train the Trainer and Assessor:
will be submitting portfolios by month end and we encourage all participants to finalise timeously
GRADUATION PREPARATIONS
This month we are also starting our Graduation Ceremony preparations, all graduates for 2013 should please save the date; 8 November 2013. Formal invitations to follow.

In keeping with Graduation, our last verification of 2013 will be happening mid-October and we urge all learners (especially those learners who need to finish a module or two in order to graduate) to submit soonest in order for us to complete their assessment before then.
"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world." Anne Frank, writer
Copyright © 2013 - The Institute of People Development www.peopledevelopment.co.za