9 to 5 (Dolly Parton)


My company recently offered a peer mentorship program designed to help us to clarify our individual purpose(s), incite conversations with peers, and to create actions that will help us become more engaged and feel more support in the workplace. During the course of a year we are paired with four peer level executives from a different branches or divisions of the company, each for a three month period, where we meet bi-monthly for about an hour and talk and do different exercises that are set by the program, but directed by our responses.

I concluded by second meeting today. My peer mentor is also a senior VP, who works in Toronto and leads the IT team worldwide – a vastly different position than mine. I am more of a lone wolf in terms of my daily work. While much of my efforts support different teams within the company, I more often than not work on my own direction and do not have a support staff. I’ve been working in my business for the better part of twenty five years and with this company for over ten of those. I’m trusted, respected, and valued.

Following each mentorship meeting, we are given a directive to focus on or accomplish before our next meeting. It might be an action or a change of process or implementation of a new idea. Regardless of the mode, I’m finding them challenging in the best way. They lead me to think more deeply about my day to day work and the impact it has on both my team and the company as a whole. They cause me to look more critically at routines I’ve fallen into over the years. It’s easy to just get the job done to maintain status quo but I’m realizing that it’s crucial to strive for more.

All in a day’s work!

I’m generally happy in my position, and blessed to be working for a company I respect, with people I genuinely regard and enjoy. I hope to remain here for as long as they’ll have me. They’re supportive and understanding of my family needs (to the degree that I was able to work from Cole’s hospital room for a month and half with their full backing). I love their policies regarding community outreach, diversity and inclusion, and environmental issues. I am motivated by the opportunities, like this peer mentoring program, we’re given to help us all to rise up and be our best selves both at work, and outside of work.

I’d like to grow to a point where I can test out my managerial skills. I like the idea of delegating and sharing ideas with a team and I’ve come to realize that it’s a direction I want to move myself toward. Learning more about what it’s like to have a team and to manage, engage and inspire a team excites me. I’m not exactly sure what that looks like for me specifically but the mentorship conversations I’ve had thus far lead me to want to delve more into how I can create that opportunity. It’s helping me to recognize things in myself that I ignore or that lay dormant.

Not bad for two sessions! I’m really looking forward to seeing where the year of this takes me. I have three other mentors to connect and learn from as well several more sessions with my current peer mentor, from whom I’m already greatly inspired by.

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