On April 2nd, 2019, Kasie and Shennice hosted Cynthia Hardy and Melissa Lindler in The Point studios. Here are the show notes:
Kasie Whitener, Clemson Road Consulting, DMSB
Shennice Cleckley, Smart Cookie Coaching
Cynthia Hardy, On Point with Cynthia Hardy
Melissa Lindler, City of Columbia Office of Business Opportunities
Theme for the day:
Key Relationships for Entrepreneurs: Mentor MatchUp Launch
- Learn more about Cynthia & Melissa
- Mentor MatchUp
- Key relationships: mentors
Cynthia Hardy is well known for her independent radio show “On Point! With Cythina Hardy” which broadcasts Sunday evenings on The Big DM 101. You’ve been in broadcast journalism for a long time. What is it about radio that appeals to you? Your show is about interviewing newsmakers. What are some of the most memorable interviews you’ve done?
We’re a show about entrepreneurship and you’ve created a career for yourself as an entrepreneur in the journalism space. We once interviewed a sports reporter who had done the same. Tell us about your entrepreneurial journey.
Wednesday, April 10th, the City is hosting Power Hour. Get the details on that here. Perhaps Melissa can tell us more about that?
At Power Hour, OBO is launching a new program. Tell us about Mentor MatchUp.
This is the second episode in a series that included a conversation with Elenea Arecco Brigdmon of Epic Life Coaching about what the role of a “Coach” is. Next week we’ll visit with Stephanie Kirkland to talk more about key relationships for women entrepreneurs.
So this week we’re going to focus in on the mentoring piece and talk about those key relationships that lift you up to the next level. Melissa once said that if you can’t find a seat at the table, you should make your own table.
Who’s sitting at your table, Cynthia? Have you mentored others?
We love to bring in resources for discussion so here are a few I found while out there Googling. First, 7 Ways to Mentor Female Entrepreneurs:
- Encourage her to take the risk
- Be proactive in your approach
- Group mentoring can alleviate the intensity of one-on-one
- Give honest feedback even when it’s negative
- Formalize the mentor-mentee relationship
- Share real-life experiences
- Empathic mentoring is effective — this is a specific type of mentoring and there’s a link to further definition of it in the article.
Mentoring is prevalent — often talked about and suggested — in entrepreneurship. Everyone from Entrepreneur Magazine to Goldman Sachs to the Clinton Foundation has a program. So why is the OBO getting into this? What’s the gap you’re seeing in Columbia?
There are a dozen reasons to become a mentor to women entrepreneurs. Among them:
- Find future employees — don’t just hire who you know, meet and learn about new people and you’ll have a better shot at creating a diverse and inclusive workforce.
- Give back to the community — we’ve said it before: When women succeed, they bring their entire community with them. Helping a woman entrepreneur grow her business is employing neighbors and keeping families safe and fed.
- Further develop your managerial skills — you may not have any direct reports right now, but eventually plan to hire them, right? So you can practice those ever-important managerial skills like giving feedback and constructive criticism with a mentee.
If you’re in search of a mentor and wonder where to find one, here are 10 Best Places as named by Black Enterprise magazine:
- At volunteer events
- On the local business scene (consider 1 Million Cups)
- College towns
- Outside your circles
- Business Incubators, Accelerators, and Colocation operations
- Local Chamber of Commerce
- In your industry
- Networking events
- Start Up events
Lastly, from the Huffington Post, some advice about being a Girlboss. Mentoring women entrepreneurs requires that you:
- Be open about your own gender-related struggles.
- Don’t wait to be approached; look for high-achieving women and take them under your wing
- Establish a formal support group for women within your company
- Give feedback, even if it’s negative.
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