“A mentor is someone who allows you to see the hope inside yourself.”
— Oprah Winfrey
Oprah is one of several public figures who inspire the Marketing Mentors Network, AMADC’s signature mentor program. Oprah’s rags to riches success story is motivating, but it’s her ability to stay authentic and her focus on giving back that sets her apart. We, like Oprah, believe that mentors are important and are thrilled that mentoring is alive and well at AMADC. The 2018-2019 Marketing Mentors Network program launched on October 1, 2018 with 46 mentors and proteges. Although the program received a significant number of applications, we limit the total number of participants intentionally in order to allow for increased personal support and connections. This year’s cohort represents a diverse range, from junior marketers and incoming marketers to agency owners and executive leaders at major associations and corporate brands.
Sharing Oprah’s obsession with focus, we use a 3-pillar approach to deliver the best mentoring experience:
To ensure the mentor-protégé pairs have a path to develop their relationship, the program is structured around proteges’ 6-month goals. Proteges share their long-term career goals for larger context, but the magic happens when mentor and protégé can tackle what can be accomplished in the program’s 6-month timeframe. These goals are captured in writing in a “Mentoring Partnership Agreement,” which not only helps proteges to cement their commitment to their goals but also puts them in the driver’s seat on the journey to attain them.
The program is directed by a team of marketers passionate about mentoring and includes a real career coach. These “marketing mentoring” champions have created a best-in class program based on best practices gleaned from mentor research and auditing other mentor programs. Events are held throughout the program to augment participants’ professional journeys, keep the group focused on goals and facilitate face-to-face personal connections. A LinkedIn group acts as a virtual water cooler for group conversations and communications.
In addition to helping proteges achieve their goals, the mentor program is a hub for growing the marketing community in the DC metro area. Connecting through mentoring is a great way to establish relationships with other marketers – not only those currently in the program, but also past participants. Over the past 14 years the program has produced over 650 alumni!
We not only want to build a tribe of DC marketers, but also help spread the mentoring mission. Mentoring others is key for senior marketers who are looking to give back, and for newer marketers to receive guidance on their professional journey. In the end, it kind of helps the marketing world go ‘round. To quote Oprah, “I think mentors are important and I don’t think anybody makes it in the world without some form of mentorship. Nobody makes it alone. Nobody has made it alone.”
In the spirit of sharing what mentoring is about, starting in December, mentor program events will be open to the marketing public. We’d love for you to join us and get a better idea of what and why we do what we do. Keep an eye on our events page for future announcements!
We think Oprah would approve.