Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to reach back and thank some of those who helped you throughout your career by serving as mentors. A mentor may be a friend, a family member, a supervisor, a company executive or a co-worker.
One of my most memorable mentors was Elvira Booker, my supervisor when I was an Eligibility Supervisor in Social Services in Richmond, Virginia. She was smart, tough, fair and by the book. After I had been in the position for a couple of years, she told me that it was time for me to go to graduate school. She assured me that I would likely receive a scholarship from the State, which I did. Two years later when I received my Master’s Degree, she hired me as a Trainer for Eligibility Workers. That’s quite important because being a trainer has been my “fallback position” throughout my career. I have called to thank her a few times through the years and in one call, she said, “I always felt that we had a special connection.” So did I!
A co-worker said that he is most thankful for the sayings shared by his manager when he worked in the retail industry. He has repeated the sayings in his own business many times through the years.
Saying: “Every one of our employees is somebody’s daughter.” Message: Treat every one of our employees with respect. Make sure you are comfortable with what she will tell her parents about work at the dinner table.
Saying: “Thanks for telling me. No surprises!” Message: Always keep me informed.
Saying: “Don’t be afraid of sleeping on it.” Message: Don’t always make decisions in haste.
Thanks to all of the wonderful mentors who have helped us through the years!