Grow Programme Case Studies – 2016

GROW Case Study 1

Why did you apply to be a mentee on the GROW programme?

I was having a very difficult time finding a new job and needed to move on from the role that I had at the time. After completing a series of unsuccessful job applications, I thought I would never be able to move on from my previous role. The email came round inviting applications, and I figured it couldn't hurt!

How did participating in the GROW programme help you?

Being allocated a mentor via the GROW programme allowed me to access and benefit from the knowledge of someone with a wealth of shortlisting and interview experience. My mentor helped me to rebuild my confidence, refine my CV and improve the quality of my applications. I have absolutely no doubt that without the support from my GROW mentor, I would not have been able to make the move to my current role and I will be forever grateful for her support during this key transitional phase in my career.

Any other comments?

After being a mentee, I applied to be a mentor on the programme and have since been allocated two of my very own mentees. This is a great opportunity for me to give something back to the programme, as well as disseminating the great advice that my mentor first gave to me!

GROW Case Study 2

Why did you apply to be a mentee on the GROW programme?

After being in the same post in the same department for 20 years and taking on more and more responsibility, I was having difficulty knowing which areas to focus on and a way forward career wise. I had been looking for a new position and been successful in gaining an interview for a post. However, this was the first interview I had had for about 15 years and was an extremely bad experience. It put me off applying for other roles because of it. I was aware of GROW and how it had helped colleagues and decided to join as a mentee.

How did participating in the GROW programme help you?

The mentor I was given had a wealth of experience across the University. They asked me to tell them all about my career so far and details about the job I was then undertaking. The mentor made me realise that I had a wealth of experience to offer and boosted my confidence. It was good to be able to speak to someone impartial and who didn’t know anything about me.

My mentor said if I ever needed any help with applying for a new position they would be more than happy to help. I eventually applied for another job, met with my mentor who put me through a mock interview. I was shortlisted for a position, interviewed and subsequently got the job.

Any other comments?

I have no doubt that my mentor was invaluable in helping me achieve a new role in the University. They were able to give me a much needed boost to my confidence. I have since become a mentor and mentored 2 mentees being able to impart my experience to them both.

GROW Case Study 3

Why did you apply to be a mentor on the GROW programme?

I had been involved in mentoring type activity previously and am a strong believer in the benefits of an effective mentoring relationship. I have worked in different roles across the university both in the centre and at faculty level, and in research and admin related roles. I
also have a background in career development therefore I felt I was well placed to be a mentor within the University.

How did participating in the GROW programme help you?

Whilst I knew that the process could bring benefits to both sides I hadn't appreciated the benefit I would get from one of my first mentoring partnerships. My mentee was seeking support to help her work through some issues affecting her in the workplace. I found it very rewarding to be able to provide the space to help my mentee think about the issues but in sharing these issues, I also learnt a great deal. The process left me with concrete evidence about the importance of reflecting on different perspectives as part of a process to move things forward. It also enabled me to learn a great deal about the values and ways of working within a part of the institution that I was not familiar with.

The experience is something I often return to when faced with challenging situations - it prompts me to stop and reflect on the different perspectives before moving forwards. The understanding I gained about the work area has also enabled me to at least raise the area as a possible work move / secondment opportunity with others .

GROW Case Study 4

Why did you apply to be a mentor and mentee on the GROW programme?

In the faculty my role does not fit into the standard L&T, Research, Department support areas and in that sense role ambiguity is a problem at times as it is hard to articulate what my role entails. I thought it would be really helpful to gain a different perspective from elsewhere in the University on areas of my own work experience. I also wanted to develop the profile of my work across the University.

How did participating in the GROW programme help you?

My mentor oversees lots of different functions and seeing how someone else works in a different faculty was really useful, not only to help me network but it encouraged me to think about how my work can evolve to engage with staff beyond my own faculty. The mentoring sessions were really, really valuable. I managed to double my budget, get an extra member of full-time staff and we are looking at re-grading my role - all things we talked about in our sessions.