Stanford S., SVP and Head of Enterprise Risk Management, is a long-time bank regulatory and risk/compliance expert with over 32 years of experience. His role involves monitoring the risk appetite and providing specific input into risk policies, standards, and taxonomy. Stanford had the pleasure of mentoring one of our summer interns and shares more about his experience as a Mr. Cooper mentor:
Is this your first time being a mentor? If not, can you elaborate on your previous experience(s)?
No, I have been involved in mentorship programs for more than two and half decades. I worked with quite a few managers that I assisted in transitioning from managers to leaders. I often use 360 reviews, Myers-Briggs, Enneagram, and Clifton Strength as tools to identify the main strengths and weaknesses within my mentees. This helped me to better assist in developing their leader traits and molding them into well-rounded professionals.
What was your first reaction when you learned the news that you’d been chosen to be a mentor for our 2022 intern class?
When I found out that I was chosen, I was filled with immediate joy! Knowing that I’d have the opportunity to mentor a future leader is an incredible feeling. I knew that with the knowledge that I’ve been able to acquire over these past few decades, this would be deemed beneficial to my assigned mentee.
What did you do to help strengthen your relationship with your mentee?
My mentee Cavana and I started reading the book “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership” by John Maxwell. This was a great icebreaker for us because it gave us the opportunity to dissect the book and pull any valuable findings from it.
What was the most important milestone that you witnessed in your mentee?
Cavana had the ability to self-reflect on weak points that needed improvement. It was great to see her develop a detailed plan of action to address these opportunities.
Were there any useful tips/advice that you and your mentee were able to pull from the novel? If so, please list a few below.
The Law of Addition, which says leaders add value by intentionally serving others. Know the people you are leading and create relationships of trust. Inexperienced leaders are quick to lead before knowing anything about the people they intend to lead. But mature leaders listen, learn, and then lead.
What was one of the most rewarding aspects of being a mentor at Mr. Cooper?
Being a mentor is a two-way street. This was an opportunity for me to not only teach my mentee everything she needed to know to be successful in her internship, but there were also valuable lessons that my mentee was able to educate me on as well.
What was one of the most challenging aspects of being a mentor?
Mentorship requires patience and understanding. Every single mentee is different and brings unique perspectives/challenges. It’s important to always individualize your course of action, as a way to better fit the needs of your mentee.
Choose one word to describe your 2022 mentoring experience.
What lesson(s) did you learn from your mentor/mentee relationship?
The main one was to understand their strengths and evaluate myself to see if I was weak in those areas. When I identified those weak areas, I would gather those lessons from my mentee and use them as a learning opportunity.
What advice would you give any future/current interns at Mr. Cooper?
Don’t limit your opportunities to your areas of expertise or specialization. Expand your reach and push yourself out of your comfort zone. Most of your successes will come from areas you are unfamiliar with, yet willing to learn more about.