Real Apprentice meets Growing Talent

Left – right in the feature photo above are Leo, Bodrul, Steve (team manager) Asher & Ash……

 

During a site visit to see how Asher was progressing on Growing Talent 14, I discovered what a very small world this in!

 

As part of the Rapid Response team based in this prestigious Global Financial Services Firm located in Central London serving over 2,000 staff, Asher has to hone his customer relationship skills to ensure his job is done efficiently and smoothly.  Leavers, joiners and ‘hot deskers’ mean locations constantly change so ensuring goods ordered are delivered to clients efficiently bring daily challenges!

 

As Growing Talent has been running a number of years now, most new Associates have the guidance of a member of the team who came through Growing Talent themselves and know exactly how they feel.  Not only does Asher have Zac from the last programme but also has the support of Leo and Bodrul who joined the team many years ago on the Real Apprentice – forerunner to Growing Talent.  It was great to see the guys still working, saving and making plans after all this time.

 

What a small world……….

Personal Evaluation – Good or Bad Thing?

Traditionally, this has been carried out as an annual appraisal.  Usually, these are looked on with trepidation.  The build-up to the day, the 1-2-1 meeting and ultimate judgement on your performance.  Hopefully, it goes well…………. If it doesn’t you end up deflated.

 

As a trainer, I’m evaluated by every participant on every course.  This can be hundreds of evaluations on me every year!   Part of my business is encouraging the unemployed into work.  Supporting them as they overcome issues and doubts along the way.

 

Often, I’ve very lucky to get thank you gifts once people have gone into work and received their first salary.  This endorses my performance evaluation as it’s often a month or two after completion.  It’s really humbling to know I make a profound difference to people who I know will go on and support others.

 

Flowers & chocolates above from Unity & Co – aka Zara & Nabiha Growing Talent 13……..

 

In addition to Growing Talent, the employment programme I devised and run sponsored by PwC, I’m a Mental Health First Aid Instructor and Wellbeing Instructor.  Participants evaluate each course as well which is shared with hiring clients.

 

On reflection, I believe it’s much better to not wait until an annual appraisal to find out what others think of you professionally but ask along the way – ‘how am I doing?’, ‘is there something I could do better?’.

 

Giving ourselves the opportunity to reflect on what we do right and what we need to improve, make us much better human beings and work colleagues.

 

 

 

Knock-on Effect – Just Business?

The Metro free newspaper in London yesterday presented headline front page news of British Gas’s intention to raise domestic electricity tariffs by 12.9% – way above inflation.

 

When wages have been stagnant for many years now in the aim of ‘pulling together’ and ‘living within our means as a country’, it seems hard to justify especially when the same newspaper on the same day features the City’s glee at the price hike as shareholders will make more money! – so much for ‘pulling together as a country’.

 

 

Were we always a nation of ‘money grabbers?’……….

The Belfast Experience!

My first visit to Belfast – home of Titanic came on 26 July 2017 ready for delivering a MHFALite course the following day.

 

It was a ‘first’ for quiet a few things.  The first time I used the automatic bag drop – with a little help from the assistant!  A great idea but I wasn’t convinced until I saw my case role off the singular baggage carousel at George Best Belfast City Airport – phew, what a relief.

 

The next first was staying in a global brand hotel where the ‘exclusive’ experience I was expecting didn’t come to fruition.  The room was very dark with no central light.  Great if you want to work at the desk with the desk spotlight but not if, like me, preference is to sprawl on the bed with laptop, books, pens etc!  Stuffiness eventually prompted me to check out the air con – which was so noisy.  This was quickly turned off and the small window opened.  Unfortunately this overlooked the metro line and main road!  After deciding to have a cup of tea – I tried fishing the large hair out of the cup – it was a crack!  Unfortunately there were several guests who decided to have a late conversation in the corridor outside my room on the way back from the bar at midnight!!!  It seemed I’d only got to sleep when the alarm clock went off!  Good job I know how to manage stress from the training I deliver on Mental Health First Aid courses!  Breakfast was a vast improvement even if the placemat was stained!

 

MHFA Lite is a three hour course to raise awareness of mental health conditions.  It’s a light touch course.  With a room full of managers from this global financial client, what would their reaction be – did they learn anything?……

 

‘Learning that different conditions manifest themselves in different ways and how having a conversation can help highlight issues’.

‘Coping strategies to suggest to others and use myself.  I have a much better awareness of the different types of mental health problems and most importantly the scale we are all on.’

‘Being mindful of my own well-being.  There is so much help available – I hadn’t realised.  Being aware of changes in others’

‘Even though I’ve done these sort of workshops before, it refreshed and added to my knowledge’

‘Listening unconditionally and being aware of small changes’

‘I feel like I could listen and provide suitable signposting’

‘It’s important to always ask even if only a small change is noticed’

 

As an Instructor it’s always great to see the learning gained from the evaluations – part of which is about the Instructor’s delivery and knowledge!  So what were the thoughts on me….. I’m glad to say a full house of top scores!

 

‘Really really enjoyable course.  Not only excellent from a line manager’s perspective but also for my own personal experience – fantastic trainer’

 

‘Instructor was very informative with lots of examples’

 

‘Very confident Instructor who encouraged participation.  An enjoyable course, well delivered’.

 

‘A straight talking Instructor’

So overall………..

 

‘A very useful course, thank you!’

‘Excellent course – useful inside and outside work’.

 

For me, the last comment is the most important.  Mental Health affects us and those closest to us both at home and work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who started this awful trend?

It seems mad that a petition has to be raised to get our Government to move on bringing in legislation to prevent anyone over 18 buying corrosive products.

 

This worrying trend doesn’t seem to be given the same focus in our media that knife crime etc does.  London has seen a worrying rise in the use of corrosive products in crime, especially throwing acid in peoples’ faces to steal their mobile/handbag etc.

 

If caught, the short sentence given for causing grievous bodily harm doesn’t equate to the lifetime sentence the victims receive.

 

This can happen to anyone at anytime.  How can it be that the establishment doesn’t think this behaviour warrants urgent action?

 

The mental anguish caused to the victims is the hidden injury, just as painful and long lasting as the disfiguring surface injuries.

 

The perpetrators can move on with their lives not so their victims.

 

Take the time to read the letter one such victim has written – you will be shocked by the stats involved……..

 

Copy and paste the link below into your browser and see for yourself……

 

 

https://www.change.org/p/uk-parliament-prohibit-the-purchase-of-acid-to-those-without-a-licence recruiter=746729227&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition

 

 

New sales pitch – what do you think?

Over the three plus years I have been delivering Growing Talent, I’ve found it difficult to get new employers involved.  They love the uniqueness and success rate – and the fact it’s free! – but rarely put their jobs forward.

 

Instead of sending our short factual information, I’ve been advised to try something more ‘sales’ themed.

 

So I’m going to try the following but would be grateful to hear any thoughts…….

 

“Want to be part of the solution to London’s unemployment?

Want to develop raw talent into a priceless gem?

 

Growing Talent is an inclusive, free facility for bringing the unemployed and employers with permanent roles together on a maximum 12 week programme to secure new talent confidently. This is not an apprenticeship scheme but a genuine initiative that has proven to be a success for many employers and job seekers.

 

Our website has films and case studies from employers and their new employees – www.growing-talent.co.uk.

 

In short, employers select potential new hires from a pre-screened talent pool and trains them in their vacant role.  At the point of hire, both are confident on the match delivering sustained recruitment.  Open to anyone over 18 from all social and academic backgrounds, Growing Talent delivers diversity automatically.”

 

‘Skilled workers abroad essential for fish and chip industry’

There was a piece on the news this morning showcasing employers of fast food outlets requesting a facility to enable them to continue hiring skilled staff from abroad to operate their businesses.

 

One of the businesses featured was a fish and chip restaurant with the assistant handling the food wearing a fur headband and no hygiene gloves on.  How much skill does it take to fry fish?

 

Is this more about low pay and profits than it is about skill shortage?

Growing Talent & The Minister for Education…..

I had an interesting call from the management of East London Job Centre Plus last night.  Damian Hinds MP and Minister for Employment had visited one of their sites to see how they are working with the unemployment on their journey back to work.

As luck would have it, Natasha was in the middle of doing a pre-screening session for Growing Talent.  This is an information session where unemployment people learn about Growing Talent and the potential opportunities it presents to them.

Impressed by the unique business-led mentoring forum which is Growing Talent, Damian asked Natasha and her manager Suk to send him some key details to present at The Sun employment roadshow at the Oval 28 June.

Hopefully more employers will be interested in this unique route to secure great talent within their business and get in touch.  110 people have secured permanent jobs through Growing Talent.  The unique point is, if all 146 people who started, had completed, they would all have gone into work.

The provisional job offer upfront, training and mentoring in the vacant role makes this a ‘no brainer’ for all.

Spreading the knowledge……..

Friday 23 June saw the delivery on the third in a series of MHFALite workshops for a global financial services organisation in London.  Places for a total of 60 people over the three workshops were well received.

 

MHFALite is the 3hour introduction to mental health first aid.  It is a short introduction to a big subject!  The course involves a lot of interaction, films and group work.  Having a table to work from is essential.

 

First potential pressure point – no table in the room!  The organiser had assumed all training rooms had tables in.  Unfortunately this room is used for non-interactive sessions!

 

Good humour was my tool of choice in ensuring the experience for the delegates was not diluted because of this.  Despite this hiccup, there was a lot of sharing experiences, issues at work and even some laughter.

 

A great session.  But what did the delegates think?

 

‘I will be more confident in knowing what to do.  I will also be more vocal when discussion the implementation of company policy in this area with senior management’.

 

‘Jane was authentic – added a real human touch’

 

‘I now have a list of resources handy and will be open minded when having conversations’

 

‘Helpful in identifying initial changes, language to use and addressing stigma’.

 

‘I now know what resources to access’.

 

‘Interesting to learn the link between physical and mental health’.

 

‘Jane was really passionate, pragmatic, realistic and knowledgeable’.

 

‘Really good course.  I would recommend it being made more available’.

 

‘An enormous amount of information to improve the business units approach in this area’.

 

‘One of the things I learnt was it’s ok to not get involved if I don’t feel comfortable’.

 

‘Jane was approachable, encouraging and knowledgable’.

 

‘Great course – wish everyone had the chance to do it’.

 

‘I learnt to focus on the small things – subtle changes – rather than be solution focussed’.

 

‘Brilliant course, well worth the investment in time.  Jane is great – makes this topic very accessible and has a great delivery.’

 

‘I loved the ALGEE framework which is easy to remember.’

WordPress.com.

Up ↑