kamauri yeh: redefining mentorship for the modern female
nike digital director and overall queen; kamauri yeh let us in on her long-term experience as a mentor to up-and-coming women in the marketing industry.
why are you passionate about mentorship?
“I am passionate about people, and over the past few years, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have the best mentors guide me through everything from career changes to relationships to apartment hunting. specifically, I’ve had incredible female mentors who taught me to stick up for myself, speak up for things that matter, and to never apologize for what I believe in. the fact that these mentors – comprised of family, friends, coworkers, and even strangers – have taken personal time to listen, share their stories and advice, has been truly priceless. I know that because these people (who may be some of the busiest humans on the planet) made time for me, I can 100% make time for someone else. I am constantly reminded that we are never bigger than ourselves, and that we are here to help and serve each other.”
what makes you a mentor?
“I think it’s important to redefine what “mentorship” looks like today. I had often thought that I needed to be mentored by seasoned and veteran professionals who would pass down their knowledge and wisdom, only accumulated by years spent working in a particular industry. while that is still valuable, I think it’s important to learn and take advice from trusted people of all levels and all walks of life. this concept of mentorship is about people taking time, being present, and sharing their stories in order for you to learn and grow. personally, as a mentor, whether it’s over a cup of coffee, phone call, text, email, or dm, I invest time into those who are willing to invest time in themselves.”
where do you currently mentor?
“I’ve recently formalized my passion for mentorship by becoming an official usc marshall school of business marketing mentor. this program has allows me the opportunity to mentor three bright mba students per semester, with the goal of helping them discover their passion points and areas in marketing where they could add value. on regular days I am mentoring at work as a director and co-worker, and in the world as a friend and role model.”
her sage advice for finding a mentor of your own:
“If there are certain people that you admire and feel you could personally connect with, start there. In addition, the below exercise was helpful for me to identify where I personally needed to seek the mentorship.”
1. compartmentalize your life, identify the key buckets: family, work, health and wellness, friendships, relationships, etc.
2. Identify which buckets could use more tlc/where you’re doing awesome!
3. look around your circle and identify people you feel could be helpful with that particular bucket. If you’re stuck, ask friends, family, post on social: there are so many resources now!
4. lastly, remember that you can never have too few or too many mentors. life is amazing, unexpected, and super overwhelming at times. lean on these people so you can ask questions and not make assumptions.
want to get in touch with kam? you can find her here: @yehwho and firstname.lastname@example.org
photos by nathalie kossek