In our ongoing series, "What My Mentor Taught Me," we delve into the transformative influence of mentorship for women in tech. This time we are shining a spotlight on Nicole Gleissner, a Senior Project Manager whose journey through the professional landscape has been profoundly shaped by her mentors.
Nicole's evolution from a Senior PMO Analyst to her current leadership role showcases the immense impact mentorship can have on one's growth as both a communicator and a leader.
Tell us about the mentors you've had, and how they've helped you improve as a communicator and leader.
When I reflect on my journey, I can't help but acknowledge the incredible mentors who've been by my side, shaping me as both a communicator and leader. These mentors have been my guiding stars from my early days as a Senior PMO Analyst to my current role as a Senior Project Manager. Their impact on my professional growth has been profound.
Back when I was navigating the early stages of my career, I often found myself overwhelmed by the challenges I faced, and like so many other women, I dealt with impostor syndrome. That's when having a mentor who had walked the same path, willing to lend an ear and offer guidance, made all the difference. Modeling their behavior helped me build not only my communication skills but also my leadership abilities. These mentors challenged me to step outside my comfort zone, take on new responsibilities, and expand my horizons.
How has your mentor's supportive attitude helped you overcome work challenges?
My mentors' supportive attitude has been a game-changer when it comes to tackling work and mindset challenges. In moments of difficulty and when I needed support, their firm belief in my abilities infused me with the confidence to confront challenges head-on.
Having a mentor who genuinely cared about my success transformed the way I approached my professional hurdles. It made me feel less isolated in my journey. Their readiness to listen, offer constructive feedback, and take proactive steps to sponsor my career was invaluable. This support was a welcome reminder that I was on the right track.
How did your mentor inspire you to go above and beyond?
My mentors were true masters at inspiring me to dream big. In my first meeting with one of my mentors, they mentioned a leadership role they thought I was suitable for. At the time, I didn’t see myself in that light; However, over several coaching conversations, they challenged me to flex my leadership muscles and demonstrate that I could be even more ambitious about my career goals. Their coaching encouraged me to embrace new opportunities and push the boundaries of my comfort zone.
Their generosity and guidance have left a lasting impression on me, and I wanted to pay it forward by becoming a mentor myself. Last year, I had the first opportunity to mentor a colleague, and I found the give-and-take of the mentoring relationship to be equally rewarding.
How much of your success would you attribute to the mentorship program you took part in?
Without a doubt, my mentors played a pivotal role in my professional growth. Their guidance, wisdom, and generous support have been instrumental in helping me reach the level I am at today.
The mentorship program provided me with not only a wealth of knowledge and skills but also a strong support network. It gave me access to experienced professionals who were genuinely invested in my development. It has also empowered me to pass on my own advice and guidance to other colleagues, I am honored to have the opportunity to be a mentor myself now.
Special thanks to Nicole for their candid conversation about mentoring. Their expertise in the importance of mentoring for tackling imposter syndrome, and improving communication and leadership skills has added a wealth of knowledge to our collection. For additional inspiring stories from our dedicated workforce, make your way to our careers blog.