Joe Wharton; Mentee, Student

I have enjoyed my experience of mentoring through 1MM. Though it was a short period of time during the UpRising Leadership programme; the wellbeing factor that my mentor, Ian McCarthy, gave provided me with the confidence to approach leadership role models, directors, CEO’s and to be a leader myself.

Mentoring helped me to build rapport with senior people and break down the psychological barriers in approaching them. Speaking to a mentor, gives you that first-hand experience, which you are unable to get otherwise. It is a useful way to gain useful information, advice and guidance for both your personal and professional life.

Mentoring is important as it provides a platform for self-reflection and enables you to stretch yourself in the way the mentors might have or haven’t done in their life. You can make a better judgement of where you want to be and how you are going to get there.

My mentor, Ian, arranged a meeting for us both and Mike Parker, Director of Services at Nuvia Limited, at the “International Festival of Business 2016” held at Liverpool. This interaction helped me to develop my communication skills, confidence and helped encourage me further to pursue my dreams of becoming a mechanical engineer working within the energy industry and afterwards felt more inspired to take the time and study for an engineering degree.

Both Ian’s and Mike’s technical and business background helped me to understand I need a degree to pursue the career I wanted as it would help to unlock future opportunities. He gave me the confidence to believe I can go to University, and not to “just” work, but to work and make my life aspirations happen.

Speaking to Ian, makes me think that social action does not involve only running of a campaign, which is very important, but seeing Ian, and his work around the ‘International Festival of Business’, it has helped me to see that social action is not just something you can do with an organisation like UpRising on a Leadership Programme, it’s a part of most businesses as well. The Liverpool Vision’s International Festival of Business help firms of all sizes and builds the networks between them. The event also supports the people of Liverpool and North West through potential increase in jobs, networking opportunities and tourism. Ian being in Liverpool, meant he was able to support a young person from there, such as myself, and that is how I think social action manifests itself in the economy.

The impact of mentoring was positive for me and is key for anyone regardless if you are just starting your career or thirty years into it. It helped me to understand it is important to build networks and take interest in various industries.

You should try mentoring, I’ve learnt that it doesn’t matter too much what industry they are from because Ian was from a different industry to where I work or wanted a career in and he was able to give me good advice which has benefited both my personal and professional life. It a mentor’s career or achievements which should interest you to find out more. A mentor wants to help and provide you with advice and guidance to help steer you to where you want to be.

I wouldn’t have had the confidence to speak to the leaders at work and pursue my career aspirations at the rate I have done if I didn’t have the mentoring experience I had with One Million Mentors.