Vaishali Kasture is an Investment Banker by profession, and has had a long, illustrious career in the corporate world in various leadership positions, including the most recent one as Managing Director and Board Member at Goldman Sachs Services, India. Her many accolades include being recognized as one of the Hottest Young Executives in Business Today, a Top 5 Woman Achiever in the Deccan Chronicle, and a Leading Women COO Award. She is seen as a great role model for women in the financial industry and beyond. She takes a keen and personal interest in supporting and mentoring other women. To top it all, she’s equally skilled on the running track as she is in the Board Room, and has run multiple marathons, including the Boston Marathon and the Comrades Ultra Marathon.
What You’ll Learn In This Mentor Chat
“There is a difference between a worker bee and a queen bee. A worker bee will keep her head down, work hard, and hope and pray that she gets recognized. A queen bee will network, negotiate, and insert herself into the right contexts in a meaningful manner.”
– Vaishali Kasture, Former- Managing Director, Goldman Sachs Services, India.
It’s been long believed that what women really need to advance within organizations is mentors. Scores of companies have set up a combination of formal and informal mentoring programs for women. But have all these efforts really translated into building a more robust pipeline for senior positions for women? Not necessarily.
The research suggests while women are being over-mentored compared to their male counterparts, they are not necessarily advancing in their organizations at the same rate as their male counterparts. One of the big reasons for that is because women’s mentors have less clout within the organizations when it comes to decision-making around selecting people for the top roles.
While women are getting valuable career advice from their mentors, what they really need is a special kind of relationship—called sponsorship—in which the mentor goes above and beyond giving feedback and advice to the mentee, and also uses his or her influence with senior executives to advocate for the mentee, especially at the time of deciding promotions. Without sponsorship, women will have less support to reach for and ultimately get the top roles.
What are some of the ways in which sponsorship differs from mentorship? How can women go about finding a sponsor? And, how can women build a relationship with a sponsor in a way that benefits her, the sponsor, and the organization? These are just a few of the questions that our Guest Mentor, Vaishali Kasture, former MD at Goldman Sachs, answers for us in this Shenomics’ Mentor Chat.
At 2:05 – What is the difference between sponsorship and mentorship?
At 5:15 – What are the benefits of sponsorship over mentorship? For women, as well as organizations?
At 8:05 – Many women believe the key to success is hard work and long hours. What do you say to women who find any other ways of advancing awkward or inauthentic?
At 12:45: What should women look for in a sponsor?
At 15:40: If there is no formal sponsorship program in a company, what are some effective strategies women can use for attracting/building a relationship with a sponsor?
At 18:50: Most sponsors or influencers in an organization tend to be men. How can women overcome or manage the potential negative perceptions around building a relationship with a male colleague?
At 24:10 Examples of how sponsorship has helped women.
The Mentor Chat
For more inspirational insights from Vaishali, check out her TEDx Talk on “Discovering Your Third Dimension.”