Monthly Archives: March 2017

Mentoring Across Borders — Cultural Diversity in Mentoring

Originally posted on the IBM Jobs blog.

 By Jennifer Pelham

In my previous article, I wrote about how mentors should take it upon themselves to create a trusting environment by being authentic. One way to do this is to be sensitive to cultural diversity. Regardless if you are mentoring someone from another country or someone from your own hometown, we all have differences and similarities. We can learn a lot if we open ourselves up and really get to know each other. Vulnerability is where the true magic of mentoring happens.


I once heard a US-based IBM executive talk about his mentoring relationship with an IBMer in Brazil. He spoke about how he learned just as much from his mentee as his mentee hopefully learned from him. Fully aware of the opportunity to learn about another culture, he shared how he expected his mentee to come prepared for their meetings with something to teach about life and work in Brazil. Continue reading

Doing what I love – facilitating collaboration and communication

I recently had the awesome opportunity to facilitate a collaboration / communications strategy workshop with the paid staff at my church, Mosaic Bay, in Albany, CA. A small team of three, members took turns sharing what their top strengths (from Gallup StrengthsFinder) mean to them, then gave feedback about how they see each others’ strengths show up in the workplace.

After defining what success looks like, they focused on using their strengths to evolve the work they are doing to increase community outreach through communications and marketing strategy and tactics. Each member highlighted how they use their strengths to support the success of the team and their goals. The team discussed how their strengths work together in relation to their roles and discovered how to best collaborate as a cohesive team. Continue reading