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Mentoring Programme Helps Arco 'Embrace Equity'

07 March 2023

As the UK's leading safety company, Arco is committed to the recruitment and nurturing of the next generation of talent in the industry and has recently launched a new mentoring programme, MentorMe, to support colleagues with their professional development.

In particular, the programme is helping women support women to thrive.

International Women's Day (Wednesday 8th March) is a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.

The theme for this year is embracing equity, creating a gender equal world that is diverse, equitable and inclusive. A world where difference is valued and celebrated.

There is a lot more that needs to be done to improve equality, diversity and inclusion in society and in workplaces and, at Arco, one of the ways this can help to be achieved is through MentorMe.

The programme aims to encourage colleagues to share and learn from one another to boost confidence, pass on lived experiences, advice, and support their career development, no matter the individual's background or personal characteristics.

Liz Farr, Learning and Development Partner and founder of MentorMe, said:

"Our mentoring programme is a fantastic way for colleagues to pursue their personal development goals with help from another colleague in the business. We currently have 42 mentees who are being supported by 33 mentors.

"Although the programme is not specifically for, or targeted at, women, we're already seeing the impact it's having on female colleagues taking part. We have some fantastic female mentors guiding female mentees, including those who have experience of working in male-dominated environments, and they're sharing how challenges within those types of environments for women can be faced. We also have female mentors mentoring male colleagues, sharing their knowledge to create equal opportunities for all."

Lynsey Jarratt, New Business Development Manager (Yorkshire & East Midlands), said:

"I enrolled to be a mentor because I feel it's important that we all have access to such guidance should we want it. Having the ability to tap into someone's knowledge, without fear, and the comfort of having a 'go-to' for support or advice should be readily available, both personally and professionally.

"I have been lucky enough in my career at Arco to have had several mentors that have helped to guide and encourage me, both in and out of the workplace."

Susan Hinchliffe, Quality Assurance Manager CEC, said:

"I have mentored people for many years and find the whole thing so rewarding as it's a two-way relationship. I have mentored both women and men and the only difference I have found is that lots of women seem to be having to catch up. That's because they may have taken time out to start a family, so when they return, they have to work harder to rebuild relationships and get up-to-date with everything.

"I believe times have changed with more equity for working mums and mentoring is an excellent way to refocus on your career."

Katie Landon, Sales Enablement Manager, said:

"Becoming a mentor, especially for graduates coming into the business, was important to me. After leaving university and starting my career on a graduate scheme myself, I can really relate to how graduate colleagues may be feeling. It can be overwhelming, challenging and, to be honest, quite scary.

"By being able to support and provide guidance on situations my mentee is facing, I can see how the MentorMe programme can really add value to colleagues by offering a third-party and neutral perspective.

"What I love about being part of this is seeing the 'light bulb' moment in our conversations; when something clicks and hearing the response: 'I never thought of it that way'. That's when you know you are adding value to both your mentee and the business."

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