08/27/2013 05:27 pm ET Updated Oct 27, 2013

To Get Promoted, Women Need Champions, Not Mentors

Instead of adding a mentor or more Twitter followers this fall, women need someone far more powerful for their career if they want to succeed: a sponsor.

As a ticket to the top, a sponsor will work equally well whether you're climbing the corporate ladder or a working as an entrepreneur, a writer or activist, said Sylvia Ann Hewlett, an economist and author of the new book Forget a Mentor, Find a Sponsor. A sponsor -- basically a power broker who will endorse you in closed door meetings and support you in stormy moments -- could also be valuable for executives established in their careers.

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