Here Are Some Of The Behind The Scenes Of Successful Mentorship Stories

Mentoring Programs
Published on
October 23, 2020

According to common assumptions, mentorships are not only for renegade individuals seeking to make history; they are for everyone, regardless of career aspirations or sectors. These programs are more than just one-way knowledge transfers. Mentorship programs are frequent connections in which the mentor and mentee share career advice and engage in personal development.

A mentorship program must strike the proper balance of personal and professional communication. An ideal mentorship program is only successful when the mentee develops as an individual with a strong appreciation for human values and expertise in their respective fields. A mentor gets exposed to various points of view, which helps them improve their mentoring skills.

Let us look at some mentor-mentee relationship stories.

  1. The On Switch  

The On Switch is a digital marketing agency set up back in 2013. The film indulges in bright and timeless marketing strategies bound to blow the caps off everyone who comes across it.

The mentor-mentee success story is centered around Nancy A. Shenker, the CEO, and Co-Founder of The On Switch, a well-established personality in the world of digital marketing. She is known to break the conventional rules of marketing to leave a mark on her consumers. Contrary to mentors who are generally older individuals, Nancy's mentor, Jim D'Arcangelo, was six years younger and helped her with content strategy and marketing tech.    

While Shenkar was writing her book 'Embrace the Machine: 111 Ways AI Will Change Your Marketing Job', she was adamant that the book was ready for publication despite reservations on her mentor D'Arcangelo who thought it required more work. Shenkar recounts her stint as a mentee and says D'Arcangelo was tough but fair. Despite her stubbornness, she worked on it, and she even mentions that the book did turn out better since she was pushed to tweak it here and there.

Nancy Shenkar stands by the golden rule, "You're never too old to be mentored," and even today seeks out help and advice from mentors regardless of their age.

  1. The Queen of All Media

Recently dubbed the 'Queen of all Media,' and rightly so, Oprah Winfrey is ever thankful to her mentor – Maya Angelou. Their relationship began in the 1970s when Winfrey was a reporter and interviewed the celebrated poet and author. They later reconnected a decade later and continued to remain in touch.

Oprah describes Angelou as a 'mentor-mother-sister-friend.' While speaking to Angelou in her book 'Why Caged Birds Sing,' Oprah had finally felt that she could relate with someone and had experienced what it felt for her experiences to be validated. Angelou gave her advice that changed her approach to her life and career. Oprah once asked Angelou what she would say to a younger version of herself, and Angelou said, "I would encourage her to forgive. It's one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody."  

Oprah once said, "She was there for me always, guiding me through some of the most important years of my life. Mentors are important, and I don't think anybody makes it in the world without some form of mentorship."

As mentioned before, a dedicated mentorship is when a person evolves as a person and develops a close personal relationship with their mentors.

There are many other stories other than the ones mentioned above. Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, was mentored by the late great Steve Jobs, the creator of Apple. They often met and discussed management styles, employee interactions, and best growth strategies on both personal on professional scales. When Jobs passed away, Zuckerberg posted, "Steve, thank you for being a mentor and a friend. Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you."

Bill Gates, one of the most influential and revered men, was mentored by American business magnate Warren Buffet. The world-famous abstract expression artist Jason Pollock's mentor was a muralist - Thomas Hart Benton. Both of them had startlingly different approaches to art, yet Pollock heavily influenced and inspired Benton.  

As they commonly say, behind every success story is a beautiful mentor-mentee relationship. Across the board, all the mentors and mentees have different and diverse career paths. These examples are enough to point out that mentoring is more of advice and guidance supporting a person's visions and goals rather than minting out career advice. A mentee-mentor relationship is nothing less symbiotic. Every individual could benefit from mentoring.

If this post resonated with you, check with your organization to see whether you are part of the MentorCloud network. If not, sign up for a demo here! Our vision is to create a mentoring planet in which true equality is achieved, and hard work is rewarded, but it's only possible with your participation.


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