01.24.22 / Workforce

Celebrating the Power of National Mentoring Month

Talking Points

  • This January marks the 20th annual National Mentoring Month and Samsung is shining a spotlight on three of the many dynamic partnerships within our workforce.
  • With “people” as one of the company’s core values, mentorship is weaved into every level of Samsung’s culture in an effort to further strengthen a talented workforce.
  • "As you invest time to help people, you get the benefit of seeing them grow. It's a powerful feeling to think in a small way you've helped people reach their potential over time." - Harry Patz, SVP & GM, Display Division

National Mentoring Month, observed annually in January since 2002, highlights the quality connection and collaboration between a mentor and mentee. With the core value of “people,” mentorship is weaved into every level of Samsung’s culture as an essential part of individual learning networks. We recently sat down with three pairs of mentors and mentees to discuss the importance of mentorship in progressing development and the mutual benefits associated with this type of program.

“I feel that part of my responsibility as a leader in the tech space is to help pave the way for incredibly talented people to step up and step in. The beauty of this is that the mentorship relationship is so mutually beneficial – that both the mentor and mentee are on a learning journey together. It is so important for leaders in tech to actively dedicate time and energy to cultivating the growth of future tech talent. Mentorship is just one facet of our ongoing efforts to create a safe, supportive, and creative working environment for all our employees.” –Michelle Crossan, Mentor, SVP, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer

“Looking back on my professional career, I can remember a time when I was told every reason why I was “not” the right fit for a position or promotional opportunity I was seeking, instead of being shown a path of how to overcome those reasons to be an ideal candidate for the opportunity. Finding the right leader and advocate for your personal and professional advancement is key to helping “unlock” what sometimes you yourself haven’t been able to yet on your own. A very important nugget I received from my mentor Michelle Crossan, SVP of Marketing was to “know who you want to be and where you want to go” so that the mentorship and sponsorship can tactically and strategically guide you there over time.” –Seth Brown, Mentee, Director, Mobile Strategy & Operations

“I have benefitted from many informal mentors throughout my thirty-year career. I believe it is paramount for any leader to “give back” as others have dedicated to investing their time in me. I like to think of this like the “coaching tree” of an NFL coach.  As you invest time to help people along the way, you get the benefit of seeing them grow, take on more responsibility and thrive in their current or other companies. It’s a pretty powerful feeling to think in a small way you have helped people reach their potential over time.” – Harry Patz, Mentor, SVP & General Manager, Display Division

“At Samsung, we are very fortunate to have leaders that are easily approachable and address any concern an employee might have. I thought the mentorship program would be a great opportunity to connect with our leaders and understand their perspective and the rationale behind all business related decision making processes. It is not easy for leaders to take time out of their busy schedule, but my mentor Harry Patz never missed any of our calls. I would like to thank him for all the knowledge and experiences he has shared with me. I am very fortunate to have met a mentor who truly believes in developing people and puts in extra effort to realize it.” – Pratap Singh Azad, Mentee, Director Solution Architects, North America Display Office

“I’ve learned a while ago that most of my professional satisfaction comes not from achieving business or product goals, but from making a positive impact on people’s professional careers, and sometimes even personal lives. At the end of the day, that is the most lasting legacy that one can hope for as an executive, from my perspective. In addition to the opportunity to positively impact someone else as a mentor, I find that spending time thinking about leadership problems and articulating my thoughts about them helps me be more introspective and self-aware as a leader.” – Eldad Persky, Mentor, VP Product & Engineering, Ads & Data

 “I consider a mentorship program an excellent opportunity to strengthen my professional network and develop stronger leadership skills and business acumen. It offers a unique opportunity for encouragement and trust, while gaining a new perspective and receiving direct feedback. It has been very valuable for me to have a mentor who is able to provide practical guidance for achieving my goals and ensure that I stay focused and on track towards completing them. This has been a meaningful experience for me and I have greatly appreciated the opportunity to participate.” –Julie Weber, Mentee, Senior Legal Counsel

A successful mentorship is one step toward achieving the big dreams and new goals that many people set at the beginning of a new year. David Lipsky, Learning and Development Strategy at Samsung, recommends that individuals aim to build a healthy network with three to five additional internal and external learning relationships in 2022. While a formal mentorship program is a great way to begin this process, there are many different ways to take action, including reaching out to members of your current network and seeking out potential mentors. As National Mentoring Month continues, it is a great opportunity to make new connections that will inspire and ignite positive change in your professional development throughout the year.

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