Image: Paul Painter
Operations director at the contractor has joined the Mentors initiative launched last year by the West Midlands mayor, Andy Street.
What spurred you to take on the mentor role?
When I reflect on my own career I think about the positive contributions that have led me to where I am, the people who have influenced and guided me with the right advice at the right time. The voice of experience is invaluable to the progression of your career.
Now, I take a keen interest in giving back to an industry that has provided me with so much support and opportunity over the years. This is what has motivated me to take on a mentoring role – both internally, within the Mace business, and externally, with initiatives such as the mayor’s mentoring programme.
Did you have to undergo any special training? What skills does a mentor need?
I haven’t undertaken any formal training. There are training modules out there but I have found the most productive tool has been self-reflection. Understanding your own journey – the twists, turns and bumps in the road – provides the opportunity to consider what went well, what not so much, and what you’d do differently if you could do it all again.
This has helped provide context to the advice I have given; there is no better context than real-life examples.
Understanding your mentee, and being tuned in to their current situation, goals and future ambitions, is essential to ensure that you are pointing them in the right direction.
Finally, creating connections has proven to be of huge value. Unlocking the potential of someone’s career is not just developing them as an individual but putting them in front of the right audience, or people who can help them to realise their career aspirations.
Mace is supportive of the mentor scheme. What benefits does it bring to the business?
Mentoring has a number of business benefits. We continue to be on a campaign to attract the best talent. By proactively engaging in mentoring schemes we are able to provide the right support and guidance at the time it is needed most.
This in turn creates an environment of development for people progressing throughout their careers at Mace, who are then willing to provide this support and guidance to others in return.