Protege Profile: Martin Schneider

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Martin Schneider, 47

Vice president of IT

The Gillette Co.

Mentor: Kathy S. Lane

How are you being groomed for your next position? It's through a combination of work experience such as job rotations and leading key initiatives coupled with coaching, focused on leadership competencies.

What's been your career ladder? I've consistently moved into new roles of increasing responsibility every three to four years, in different parts of the organization and in different geographical locations. Each role has had a different focus, broadening my IT and business experience. These have included application development, infrastructure management, business process redesign and strategy development.

What special skills do you bring to your job? Leading organizations in times of change. Business requirements such as acquisitions/divestitures, cost reductions, new technology introduction, require changes to the IT organization. The experiences I've had help me understand what's required to facilitate change. This involves clear communication, building successful teams and coaching.

What's important about having a career mentor? It's making sure that you have an appropriate guide, providing visibility and accessibility to the right people - and knowledge. A good mentor will also help you do the right things right, and do the wrong things once. A good mentor will provide feedback on the positives as well as help you learn from your mistakes.

Are there any downsides to being mentored? Mentoring can be viewed as the sharing of wisdom based upon experiences. As such, you have to be careful in not relying too much on one person.

Are you mentoring anyone? Informally, yes. We don't have a formal mentoring program, but I believe in the concept. I'm mentoring a person who I view as an upcoming leader. I think it's working out very well. This person has been recognized as having appropriate competencies to be a leader in [Procter & Gamble].

Special Report

2006 Premier 100 IT Leaders

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Copyright © 2005 IDG Communications, Inc.

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