Six ways men can better mentor women in the workplace

Brad Johnson and David Smith are two dudes – their term – with a mission to get dudes to help women in organizations.

They both teach at the United States Naval Academy, so they are well aware of masculine culture and the problems women face in organizations – as well as the difficulties that arise when men mentor women.

Prof. Johnson, a clinical psychologist, has deeply researched mentoring and Prof. Smith, a sociologist, teaches gender issues and the experience of women.

While they were meeting with Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer of Facebook and author of Lean In, she stressed that men have to be a big part of the solution for workplace gender issues and so the two dudes decided to see what they can do to expand and improve mentoring by men of women. “We’re guys, we teach at a military academy, and we can speak to guys with credibility,” Prof. Johnson said in an interview.

With so few women in top positions, there aren’t enough to mentor the many women in lower ranks and men have to help. Beyond that, there are three reasons for guys to get involved.

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