Career Advice

What Mentoring Means to Me

John Smith

2015 saw the introduction of the FDM Mentoring Programme which now boasts 89 pairs and a total of 167 participants within the UK.  With plans to extend the scheme across our global locations in 2017 Jo Southwell-Sander, Diversity and Inclusion Advisor gives us an insight into the programme.

We live in a fast paced environment, always trying to get ahead, be the best, achieve the most and then go further. In a world where technology and information are at our finger tips we are expected to push ourselves further and further leaving us with very little time for ourselves.

Mentoring, in my opinion allows time to be set aside to talk about how you can get ahead, giving you time to figure how to bring out the best in yourself while preparing to set yourselves new goals.

I am very happy to be both a mentor and a mentee within FDM. I signed up to be a mentor to try to help someone else reach their potential. It is great to be able to see someone grow and reach their goals while learning through mentoring. It is great to be able to help people reaching their potential, as you can explore your own thoughts as examples.

As I strongly believe in continual professional development, I also have my own mentor. Having a sounding board can be really helpful no matter what stage of your career you are at. My first meeting as a mentee felt strange; I was unsure about how it was going to go, what I would say, even how long it would last and what I could expect to get out of it. The biggest bit of advice would be to take control and be open.

Being involved in a Mentoring Programme has helped me learn to be more reflective and to understand the way I work, my values, my goals, alternative options and how I work with others. Through being in a mentor and a mentee relationship, I have gained a lot by discussing situations, tasks or goals I have developed my analytical skills and my communication skills.

If you would like to hear more about the FDM Mentoring Programme please contact

Updated 7 December, 2016