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This Is the Most Overlooked Part of Mentoring

April 21, 2017, 8:54 PM UTC

The most effective mentors don’t just talk business.

That’s the lesson that Molly Ashby, founder and CEO of Solera Capital, has embraced as a mentor for the Fortune/U.S. State Department Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership.

“Every single one of the mentees I consider one of my children and part of my family,” she says, noting that she always invites her mentees to her house in the country for a weekend. “The most valuable way you can impact their lives is to really help them with what is the most important issues in their lives.” That’s relationships, families, and making a difference, she added.

In its 12th year, the mentoring program matches business leaders from countries ranging from Argentina to Zimbabwe with some of the top female executives in the U.S.

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Ashby co-mentors with Sherrie Westin, the EVP for Global Impact and Philanthropy at Sesame Workshop. One of their past mentees, Chipsafer CEO Victoria Alonsoperez of Uruguay, said that not only did she learn about dealing with investors and customers, but she also got to see their “human side.” She gained not just “two amazing mentors but two friends that I can always count on.”

Westin says that Alonsoperez told her that she and Ashby had not shown her how to be a leader but helped show her what kind of leader she wanted to be. “I cant think of a nicer compliment,” she says.

Stay tuned over the next few weeks as we highlight more of the program’s past and present mentors and mentees.