June 20, 2019

Having a protégé makes a better manager

By: Judy Mathias

Editor’s Note

Leaders who sponsor other people in the workplace (ie, have a protégé) experience career benefits in the form of promotions or stretch assignments, the June 17 Harvard Business Review reports.

A survey conducted for the book, “The Sponsor Effect: How to Be a Better Leader by Investing in Others,” found that:

  • Senior-level managers who had a protégé were 53% more likely to receive a promotion in the previous 2 years.
  • Entry-level managers who had a protégé were 60% more likely to have received a stretch assignment.

Long term, of survey respondents, who ranged from entry-level mangers to CEOs:

  • More than a third (39%) of those who had a protégé said they were “satisfied with their professional legacies” at this time in their careers.
  • Only a fourth (25%) of those who didn’t have a protégé said they were satisfied.

The benefits of sponsorship don’t accrue to those who just mentor (ie, offer advice and introductions) someone more junior. A sponsor and protégé are both actively and publicly working for each other’s success, the author says.

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