Why coaching and mentoring for IT Folk?
Who are IT Folk?
I use IT (Information Technology / I.T.) as an umbrella term for any activity that involves using or creating technology. I also love the way I can playfully use IT instead of it, and explore the the terms IT Girls, IT Boys and IT Folk . For a bit of a blurb on why, please check out my blog post on IT Girls and our stories.
IT is the fastest growing industry globally and underpins solutions for all other industries. With only 4% of Australian 15 year old boys and a negligible percentage of girls reporting an interest in IT-careers, we need to think outside the box to develop, attract and retain additional talent while we fix the pipeline. There are plenty of people with transferable skills who would love to be involved, but don’t know how to approach IT. At the same time, many IT folk struggle to navigate the system, ensure we are inclusive and politically correct, and remain authentic.
Sometimes all you need is a sounding board, whether that is for working out your business or product strategy, dealing with your boss, figuring out your next career step, or understanding how you can contribute to the solution and help create a diverse and inclusive organisation. Some organisations have invaluable internal programs, but if you don’t, how do you find a coach and mentor? Many of us also find it easier to speak with an external coach, consultant and mentor rather than someone that is within the organisation.
From my own experience as a protégé/mentee, mentor, coach, leader and consultant, I know that engaging someone to help for a reason, a season or a lifetime can be invaluable personally, professionally and for your business. I love to enable, empower and inspire people to think outside the box and find their voice, and guide them on their journey when they want it.
My coaching blends robust, contemporary business coaching in IT with a lifetime of mentoring and guiding people on their journey.
Do you need tech business coaching?
Why I coach and mentor
Based on my own lived experience as an IT Girl (woman in tech), for over 30 years, I am acutely aware that there often is a disconnect between people and technology, as well as between the different players. I also know that the lack of diversity is not about fixing people but rather shifting mindsets and changing behaviours.
To address this, I have developed a coaching approach that is inclusive of every voice and perspective. I provide a unique blend of my experience from running tech teams and businesses, with years of personal mentoring to provide a tailored, personalised experience for every client.
As someone who has often been the “only woman in the room”, is from a culturally and linguistically different background, has felt the intrinsic bias very personally, I have developed thick skin and broad shoulders. I thrive when I can bring others with her on the journey towards inclusion and belonging.
When can coaching and mentoring be useful?
- You struggle to navigate the system and find your purpose.
- You want to position yourself as a thought leader in tech.
- You have an amazing idea that you’d like to turn into a business.
- You have developed an awesome product. Now what?
- You want to find other uses for your technology.
- Your boss does not value you.
- You don’t have the confidence to take the leap into tech.
- You find it difficult to communicate with IT people.
- You feel like you are not being heard or seen.
- You want to step into IT from a different industry.
- You want to help co-create an inclusive organisation.
- Want to pivot your business to a new or additional audience?
- You stepped into a new role and thought “what happened?”
- You lack confidence to take the next step in your career.
- You have questions, but you don’t know if you can ask them.
- You want someone to help you work out YOUR superpower.
- You’re in IT and find it hard to communicate with non-IT people.
What I Can Help You With
All of the below can be applied at a personal, professional, leadership, product or business level.
My Approach to Coaching & Mentoring
Find your voice.
Stand your ground.
Shape your future.
I make sure that all my programs and initiatives can be tailored for a group and personalised for individuals. This helps me live up to my motto Celebrating Differences, and it ensures that you as a client have the experience that suits your life on a certain day.
To guide our work together, I use the 5Ds iterative process that emulates design thinking and lean startup mechanisms by continuously validating against outcomes.
Although we are dealing with serious matters, it is important that we have a bit of fun, which is why I have named my programs IT Girls and IT Boys. More on this under each section.
The 5Ds of coaching & mentoring
We DIRECT to define strategy and identify desired outcomes. This is where we ask the questions WHY, WHO, WHAT, WHEN and HOW.
We DISCOVER to explore the current state and clarify the problem. This may include a DIB Audit that may include surveys, interviews, review online presence and internal documentation.
We DESIGN to co-design, co-create and co-operate initiatives that work for your organisation. We adapt the DIB framework for your organisation.
We DELIVER the various initiatives, which could include team and individual profiling and coaching/mentoring, workshops, facilitated mentor circles for inclusion, safe spaces for asking “awkward” questions.
We DELIBERATE to reflect over what we have done, check against desired outcomes, and improve the processes and initiatives.
I also give hands-on workshops & talks
If you are looking for a keynote speaker, someone to run aworkshop, a panelist or someone to facilitate or host conversations, check out my faviourite topics and highlights.