NSW YFP Chair Michael Tran says aspiring leaders should look to multiple mentors to progress their career.
Judo Bank Director Relationship Michael - who has had five mentors and been a mentor to three people over the past eight years - credits them with helping his career transformation.
He said: “Not having any finance background whatsoever and jumping into the role, I looked to have a mentor guide me through the career path and into industry that I've never navigated before.
“It was my first stint in the finance industry and what was interesting for me as an associate - as an assistant to a manager - was that you usually look up to your current manager as your mentor.
“But for me, I actually used all the managers on the floor as a bit of a guidance.
“In my view, it doesn't necessarily have to be one mentor.
“You can have several mentors with skills and unique abilities to teach. So that's what I initially did.
“I reached out to every single manager and said: 'can you be my mentor? Can you teach me your speciality? Something that I can learn?
“That helped me immensely.
“As a mechanism to progress in my career, wherever I've worked, I've always looked for additional mentors that are higher up in the workplace.
“I didn't have any exposure to FINSIA.
“If I did, I would have reached out to some of the mentors at FINSIA to see they could have helped.
“Having a mentor is just as - if not even more - important now in my career where I'm equipping myself with the tools that future leadership demands
“But that can be difficult as those in senior executive roles are very time poor, and I think that's where there's a benefit of my model of looking at multiple mentorships.
“It enables me to diversify those leadership skills I am looking to enhance. I'm sure having many different mentors gives you very different perspectives about how they do things.
“Another advantage of having multiple mentors is that you can check ideas, brainstorm and get new insights.
“Some of these mentors have become really close friends who have supported me from the get go.”
Asked about how mentoring should be done, he’s resolute: “Face-to-face is always better - 110%.
“This whole virtual thing was a band-aid on what was happening in relation to the environment that we're in.
“Nothing beats, face to face. Sitting down having a coffee, even as simple as that is better than sitting over a screen. There is that emotional interaction.”