Mentoring women and minorities

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Introduction

Women and the minority are some of the major groups of people that have significantly suffered from underrepresentation in the various fields of life. In this case, both women and the minorities are denied opportunities based on their social status. For instance, women and the minority are considered to be denied entry to various, colleges and higher learning institutions as well as certain career fields (Crawford & Smith, 2005). In this regard, various efforts have been put in a bid to improve the overall social standards of both women and the minorities. Notably, mentoring has proved to be the most effective method of changing the world towards improving the careers and lives of women as well as the minority. To put it more simply, different highly skilled individuals have constantly volunteered to offer moral support to women and the minority thus acting as their major driving force towards optimal utilization of the available opportunities. Nevertheless, researchers have emphasized the need of peer mentoring since most women and the minorities face a great challenge in finding a professional mentor.

Roles Played by Mentors in Enhancing Opportunities for Women and Minorities

Several studies have shown the existence of a direct relationship between mentoring and improved access to opportunities for women and minorities. In this connection, mentored individuals among the minority groups and women have been noted to be in a better position of achieving success in life compared to their colleagues (Eby, Allen, Evans & DuBois, 2008). For instance, the mentored individuals have been recognized in registering high levels of performance in their careers. Increased levels of job mobility, promotions, and general performance recognition are some of the key characteristics associated with women and minorities under the mentorship.

Secondly, mentors play a significant role in helping women to identify their purpose in life. For example, the mentor gives morale to individuals primarily in the women and minority category thus uplifting their self-esteem and instilling a sense of being worth. Consequently, the mentored individuals can work incredibly perfect and in turn accomplish activities that were previously only meant for the majority particularly men (Megginson, 2006).

Thirdly, mentors play a great role in uplifting women and the minority through providing various invaluable lessons. In this connection, the mentors help the individuals to establish their goals in the career field as well as in life. Similarly, mentors deliver both technical and managerial skills to the involved individuals (Crawford & Smith, 2005). For example, the mentor helps the women in remaining independent while instilling more positive behaviors. Nevertheless, most of the mentors advocate for the rights of women and minorities in a very vocal manner thus protecting their interests.

Mentors also enhance opportunities for women and minorities through providing crucial feedback to the individuals. To put it in a better way, mentors give relevant feedback that is essential in improving the current status of the minority and women. The mentor outlines the major observations noted and the points that need improvement for the easier achievement of success (Crawford & Smith, 2005). For instance, mentors can condemn any vices being propagated among women and the minority. Furthermore, mentors make follow ups in a bid to ensure that all the provided guidelines are keenly followed as a bold way of remaining in line with the set objectives (Megginson, 2006). On the other hand, mentors play the role of cheerleaders in both groups through celebrating their achievement and subsequent success. Besides, they serve as role models and offer support to women and minorities.

Ways that Peer Mentoring Maybe used Most Effectively

Peer mentoring has been proved to be an effective method of enhancing opportunities between the minority groups and women. Researchers have associated peer mentoring with high levels of success particularly among women (Crawford & Smith, 2005). According to various studies, the high-level of success is mainly resulted by the sharing of common social status among the peers thus leading to a sense of confidence. For instance, peers can express their problems to each other without any fear of being intimidated or being wrongfully judged. To put it more simply, there is a strong bond between peers that makes mentoring on this ground more fruitful.

Training is one of the best ways of improving the effectiveness of peer mentoring. In this view, women, and minorities should be exposed to special training sessions that will equip them with relevant skills for future use (Megginson, 2006). The training program should involve the provision of the basic mentoring skills as well as the introduction to the primary communication methods and systems (Megginson, 2006).  Similarly, great attention should be paid in choosing the right activities that will, in turn, lead to social and moral development (Crawford & Smith, 2005). Effective peer to peer mentoring is, therefore, efficient in improving the confidence, communication skills and self-esteem of women and minorities while in turn exposing them to a variety of opportunities.

Conclusion

Women and the minority continue to suffer from the effects of underrepresentation primarily through the denial of opportunities. However, mentoring has been considered to be an effective method towards enhancing the opportunities of these groups of people. In this case, mentoring improves both social and moral development of individuals in these two groups. The effectiveness of peer mentoring can be improved through providing training and choosing the correct activities. All factors considered, mentoring is an effective method of enhancing the overall opportunities for both the minorities as well as women.

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  1. Crawford, K., & Smith, D. (2005). The we and the us: Mentoring African American women. Journal of Black Studies, 36(1), 52-67.
  2. Eby, L. T., Allen, T. D., Evans, S. C., Ng, T., & DuBois, D. L. (2008). Does mentoring matter? A multidisciplinary meta-analysis comparing mentored and non-mentored individuals. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 72(2), 254-267.
  3. Megginson, D. (2006). Mentoring in action: A practical guide. Human Resource Management International Digest, 14(7).
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