Ask Sallie: Do I Need a Sponsor at Work? How Do I Find One? (Video)

By Sallie Krawcheck

Not-so-surprising fact: Having a professional mentor helps men more than it helps women (sigh). So people are starting to look toward sponsorship as a way to help women at work instead.

But … do you need a sponsor? And how do you find one if you want one? Here’s Sallie’s answer.

Sallie’s answer:

OK, quick, remedial mentor / sponsor definition: A mentor is someone who will answer your questions; a sponsor is someone who will fight for you. The research tells us that we women — vs men — are over-mentored, and we’re under-sponsored. We have many fewer sponsors than men do.

This is really important because the sponsor is the person when the door is closed. Carla Harris from Morgan Stanley has said: Every important decision about your career is made behind closed doors, when you’re not in the room. So if you don’t know who that person is in that room fighting for you, there’s likely no one in that room fighting for you.

How do you find one? Network, network, network, network. Get to know folks. Get to know what they’re working on. Let them know what you’re working on. You’ll gain lots of knowledge, and along the way, you’ll find yourself — yes — some additional mentors. But you may also find yourself those one or two or three or five sponsors who can really help your career.


© 2019 Ellevest, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

All opinions and views expressed by Ellevest are current as of the publish date, for informational purposes only, and do not constitute or imply an endorsement of any third-party’s products or services.

Information was obtained from third party sources, which we believe to be reliable but not guaranteed for accuracy or completeness.

The information provided should not be relied upon as investment advice or recommendations, does not constitute a solicitation to buy or sell securities and should not be considered specific legal, investment or tax advice.

The information provided does not take into account the specific objectives, financial situation or particular needs of any specific person.

Investing entails risk including the possible loss of principal and there is no assurance that the investment will provide positive performance over any period of time.

A newsletter you’ll love

Get all the news, advice, and must-know info on women, money, and career.

Sallie Krawcheck

Sallie Krawcheck is the Founder & CEO of Ellevest.