Home' HR Monthly : October 2014 Contents 46
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MENTOR. MENTEE .
Each month we talk to a pair who have
participated in the AHRI mentoring program.
Q. WHAT DID YOU GET OUT OF
THE MENTORING EXPERIENCE?
My initial aim was to learn about
the ins and outs of being an HR
consultant, pathways to transition
from the public sector into the
private sector, and the pitfalls and
advantages of working for yourself.
My mentor taught me a lot about
those things, and I’ve also been
able to discuss HR theories and ideas with him and learn ways to
reframe my thinking from the operational to the strategic.
Q. WHAT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON YOU’VE TAKEN
AWAY FROM THE MENTORING?
My most important learning is that regular self-reflection is
critical in order to grow from your experiences. It helps to
ensure that you’re travelling along your chosen career path,
rather than just drifting through the day-to-day work.
Q. HOW OFTEN DID YOU MEET?
We didn’t set a strict schedule, but rather met in person ever y
few week s. We caught up more regularly when there were
particular challenges I wanted to discuss. When we were both
busy, we would slot in some email discussions. The flexibility
of the arrangement worked well for us because it never felt like
Q. WHAT’S YOUR DREAM HR JOB?
To be an independent HR consultant, with a focus on providing
creative solutions and adding value rather than maintaining
the status quo. I love working on equity and diversity policy,
facilitating training and under taking workplace investigations,
so my dream job would definitely incorporate all of those areas.
Q. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE A MENTEE WANTING TO
PARTICIPATE IN THE PROGRAM?
It’s really important to think about what you want from the
program before you sign up. I took time to evaluate and
articulate this. It paid off, as I was matched with a fantastic
mentor who really enriched the experience.
MENTEE: MEGAN BOYD CAHRI
CURRENT JOB TITLE: HR CONSULTANT AT THE
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL UNIVERSITY (ANU)
MENTOR: SCOTT BOURKE CAHRI
CURRENT JOB TITLE: DIRECTOR OF SB
CONSULT PTY LTD
Q. TELL US ABOUT YOUR
I was previously in
management and HR roles in
the public ser vice, Australian
Federal Police and Australian
Defence Force. I now run my
own consultancy, based in
Canberra. I came to the HR
profession somewhat later in
my professional life, so I under took postgraduate studies.
I strongly believe in professional development and the
concept of lifelong learning.
Q. WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO BECOME A MENTOR?
I view AHRI’s mentoring program as a way of contributing to
the broader HR profession. Plus I was a mentee myself some
years back. AHRI has a pivotal role in guiding and developing
future HR leaders, and the program is an ex tremely effective
means of doing so. Being a mentor is also part of my own
professional development. Many don’t realise that mentors
learn just as much as the mentees.
Q. WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNT FROM MEGAN?
Megan brought innovative and perceptive insights into our
discussions, par ticularly topical and ‘big ticket’ HR issues.
She has focused my attention on some of the challenges
that face younger HR professionals, and our discussions
have been excellent opportunities for me to assess my own
expertise and competencies. Together we’ve learnt the
value of good conversation, over good cof fee.
Q. WHAT DO YOU HOPE MEGAN HAS TAKEN AWAY FROM
THE MENTORING EXPERIENCE?
I’d like to think I’ve been able to provide Megan with
guidance on overcoming some of the everyday hurdles we
face as a profession, as well as impar ting some broader
strategic HR understandings within both public and private
sector contexts. I hope Megan has gained some insights for
her own career path.
Q. WHAT ARE YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS FOR
MENTEES TO GET THE MOST OUT OF THE EXPERIENCE?
The planning and scheduling of regular meetings
is ex tremely important, as is regular contact via email
and phone between meetings. I think the golden rule is
to commit to the mentoring experience, and view each
meeting as a t wo-way opportunity to exchange and learn.
Whether you are a
mentee wanting to
excel in your current
position or a seasoned
professional looking to
develop your coaching
and mentoring skills,
will give you valuable
insights from the
sharing of advice,
program runs over a
“MY MOST IMPORTANT LEARNING IS
THAT REGULAR SELF-REFLECTION
IS CRITICAL IN ORDER TO GROW.”
ANU HR CONSULTANT, MEGAN BOYD
23/09/14 12:20 PM
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