Everybody should have a mentor. At least that is what I believe helped me achieve success and obtain my dream job as vice president of multicultural marketing for Aflac.

Starting out as a high school math and science teacher and reaching the apex of a global corporation has been a rewarding ascension for me, filled with the guidance of wonderful mentors who helped me achieve personal and professional growth.

My introduction into Aflac was as an administrative assistant for the company’s Caribbean sales territory. Eventually, I became a coordinator for the Hispanic market and moved up through several positions. My venture as second vice president of the management division and eventually vice president of client services was a blessing in disguise. There, I found new mentors and acquired new knowledge and skills about business implementation and customer service.

In addition to receiving great career advice and achieving a well-rounded professional background, having mentors helped me gain valuable knowledge and allowed me to transition smoothly from one area to another throughout my career.

I believe that your life gets enriched when you meet someone new. Therefore, I recommend fostering relationships with more than one mentor to develop in several areas professionally and personally. Also, I believe your chosen mentor doesn’t have to look like you or share your interests to be a good mentor. Your mentors can be individuals from the community, church, or the career field that you aspire to tap into.

I am honored to be a mentor myself and to advise others that the worst obstacle is a self-imposed one. My advice to those seeking career and personal progression is as follows:

  • Have integrity.
  • Be honest.
  • Develop relationships.
  • Help others.
  • Take pride in what you do.
  • Find mentors who will be honest, frank, and help you grow.
  • Work hard and do your best at whatever your given assignment.