Women have the reputation of being great nurturers. After all, we have always been primary caregivers for our family and children. It is our history. It’s in our DNA.

Here’s my question this week for professional women: Why doesn’t that love and nurturing carry over more into the workplace?

What happens to women in a work environment that holds them back from nurturing and supporting each other?

I know that women make excellent managers. We often take great care to nurture our staff, and sometimes, in fact, we take on too much work ourselves to protect our team. But how much support do we give our female peers?

In a recent radio interview I did with Gail Evans on Women Mean Business Radio, this topic surfaced. Gail spoke about how women don’t seem to help each other be successful in a corporate environment. During the interview, she told the story of one instance in her tenure as Executive Vice President at CNN that a female colleague exhibited some behavior during a meeting that Gail felt would eventually sabotage her career. After the meeting, Gail asked this woman to join her in the ladies room, and she gave her some honest feedback about what took place during the meeting and how she might approach the situation differently in the future. Gail was nurturing her. She cared enough to help her female colleague be successful. Gail’s philosophy is that if one woman succeeds, we all succeed.

How many times have you taken a female colleague/peer aside for the purpose of helping them advance their career?

It’s Valentine’s Day week. Maybe it’s time to  love and nurture  our female colleagues.

I would love to hear from you about specific examples you might have when you “nurtured” a female co-worker and spread the love.