Case Studies

Conversations on Leveraging the Sponsorship Opportunity

Sector: Global Manufacturing Company

Size: More than 5000

Region: India

The Need

Many organisations today have a strong belief that diversity will bring in a wider pool of perspectives, ideas and talents. They invest in and depend on various programmes to harness the strengths of diversity. One such programme is Sponsorship where high potential women employees are paired with senior leaders within the organisations in a sponsor and protégée relationship.

Our client had also recently launched the sponsorship initiative which aimed at creating a level playing field on the principals of meritocracy. The selection of protégées and sponsors was done and the further process was already being followed. However the need of bringing all parties together was being felt, majorly to set expectations, lay common guidelines and explore options to add value to the current process.

Our Approach

Step 1: Pre-Work included conversations with some Sponsors to understand how the session can aid their role and with some protégées to get a snapshot of what is working well & what needs to be padded up.

Step 2: Dialogue Session

The format we followed had a common session with all the sponsors and protégées together and one session with only the protégées

The conversations were around:

  • Sponsorship versus Mentorship

  • Leveraging the sponsorship opportunity for Developing Women Leaders

  • Guidelines around clear goals/ one on one meetings/ group sessions

  • Critical elements of a sponsorship relationship

  • Sharing best practices & success stories

The Success

  • High commitment to the initiative from the Sponsors

  • A sense of pride and ownership amongst the protégées to be the chosen one to get benefitted from this initiative.

The Success factors:

  • Organisations focus on the idea of harnessing diversity for long term growth

  • The fair selection of protégées based on meritocracy

Probable Challenges:

  • Chances of sponsor slipping in to the mentors role

  • Apprehensions about taking newer projects to increase their own visibility

  • Sustainability of the initiative