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GTP20: How important is mentoring and coaching to success?

Curium Solutions

This blog post has been produced for the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce as part of the 2020 Growth Through People campaign.

Growth Through People is the Chamber’s annual campaign aiming to help local firms boost productivity and grow through improved leadership and people management skills. In 2020 this involves 8 free workshops taking place between 2nd March and 27th March, culminating in a full-day Growth Through People conference on 2nd April. In addition, throughout the campaign the Chambers will be publishing thought leadership podcasts, videos and blog content such as this.

Thanks to our Headline Sponsors – Prime Accountants Group, Aston University, Curium Solutions and CIPD - all workshops are free to attend. Interested readers can find out more and register to attend Growth Through People workshops here, and the Growth Through People conference here.

I’m really lucky. I get asked to be involved in some really interesting things.

Sometimes those opportunities give me chance to stand back and reflect and some really stick with you long after it is over.

Last October I was asked to chair the judging panel for the  first West Midlands Women in Tech Awards. I will admit to being really excited. I had seen this whole thing take shape, becoming something quite spectacular and full credit going to Debbie Assinder and Ifraz Ahmed in pulling this together.  After all, you can take the tech out of the girl but…..

My fellow judges were equally as impressive, the wonderful Faye Pressly , Pam Waddell OBE, David Hardman OBE, Deborah Leary OBE, Jo McDonald and Professor Hanifa Shah – I will confess to a dose of Imposter Syndrome before the day even got started!

It was a really long, fast paced and completely awe inspiring day. It was, quite literally a continual stream of ability, inspiration, passion and vision – a joyful celebration of talent. The judging process wasn’t easy – far from it – simply because the bar was so high but at the end of an utterly exhausting but exhilarating day, our job was done.

Well – until the Awards Dinner…..

I had expected it to be an amazing event and it was even better than that! It was a night of energy, humbling stories and shock for the winners who simply didn’t think it would be them! I sat with our guest speaker, Jacqueline De Rojas CBE, President of Tech UK and all round superstar and  we reflected on:

What is the secret ingredient? What drives these super talented people? Is there a X factor?

Well Jacqueline and I had the chance to reflect again a couple of weeks ago when we attend our inaugural advisory board for a start-up aimed at promoting STEM as a career choice for young girls and women; introducing them to mentors and coaches to open up a sector which has a lot to do on diversity. What was remarkable is that the founder, the  fantastic inspirational Rav Bumbra had recognised that she needs the support of a mentors and coaches to take this idea forward and had assembled a very impressive board to do just that. She asked for help and we obliged.

As I reflected on that meeting and thought back to the the Awards, it reminded me why I am Chair at Curium as this is what they do, day in day out. Curium are an award winning business and are renowned for their work in Leadership Development and I don’t think it’s any coincidence that leadership, coaching, support and mentoring play a part in so many success stories. I know these things have helped me in my career.

A chance meeting, a supportive boss or partner, a safe space to grow, someone to listen and offer great advice and then the ability to do something with those ingredients is often what it takes to propel us forward.

Helping people achieve; empowering potential and simply be the best that they can be.

And these experiences offer me the chance to see what we are all truly capable of  if we reach out - #inspiring #empowerpotential #keepitreal #peoplefirst

Tracy Westall
Executive Chair
Curium Solutions