Rich Products is dedicated to improving gender equity at all levels of leadership through deliberate development of members of the Associate Resource Group, “OWN” (Our Women’s Network).
OWN created two mentoring programs. The first targets high-performing associates and partners them with a member of our Executive Team to prepare them for senior leadership roles. Throughout the course of the mentoring relationship, which lasts 18 months, they are challenged to improve their strategic thinking, enterprise mindset and financial acumen, among other capabilities that will position them to be prepared for expanded leadership assignments in the organization.
The second program by OWN allows members who are intentional and deliberate about their development and career to opt in for mentorship opportunities. It is available for all members of OWN, pairing associates with a leader at a higher level of tenure or experience. The mentee and mentor meet monthly for a 12-month cycle, during which they work on developing personal goals, building competencies, and overcoming any obstacles or challenges the mentee might face. These mentoring relationships often turn into career-long friendships, as the mentee continues to expand their network of advocates.
For both programs we have developed a Mentoring Guidebook and monthly discussion topics to spark robust conversations. Additionally, all mentors and mentees are provided training on how to optimize their participation in the program. Our mentoring programs, combined with our Associate Resource Groups’ programming, are ensuring that we continue to strive toward a diverse and equitable workforce.
Mentee participants have raved about the one-on-one coaching they received from an experienced Associate, developing leadership capabilities, prioritizing growth areas, and recognizing their own contributions. Mentors spoke about how inspiring and motivating it was to learn from their mentees, and the sense of fulfillment they get from helping other women grow in their careers.
I have benefited from our mentoring program earlier in my career as a mentee of some of our fabulous leaders and have really enjoyed being a mentor at this point in my career as a way to help others realize their full potential. Our mentorship program provides a great way to connect with others in the organization that you may not work with on a day to day basis and I always learn something new too.
Being a mentor through OWN has been such a rewarding experience. It’s allowed me to better understand the day to day challenges and opportunities associates face, which has really helped me be a more empathetic leader.