January 17 was an important day this year: not only was it my birthday, it was also the day of the first Capgemini & Urban Synergy workshop. Capgemini is working alongside the award-winning early intervention mentoring charity to inspire young people and improve their career aspirations with a series of six workshops.
The World of Work
The first of the workshops, ‘World of Work’, focused on workplace etiquette. A group of young people visited our Holborn office where Urban Synergy’s instructor, Paul Lawrence, and several Capgemini team members who have volunteered to be mentors, took the attendees on a journey through the best practices and behaviours to display in the workplace.
Towards the end of the workshop we were pleasantly surprised by a special guest: none other than the CEO of Apps UK, Paul Margetts! Paul came in and covered his story of how he rose through the ranks to become CEO; this was quite an eye opener for me as I had not heard his story before. He also spoke about the special qualities that he looks out for in Capgemini employees: problem solving, positivity and commitment.
This was followed by an impromptu Q&A session and one of the questions related to how Capgemini addresses emerging technologies, with Paul commenting that we keep an eye on all upcoming technologies and trends before finding suitable ways to incorporate them into our portfolio of offerings.
The second Capgemini & Urban Synergy workshop took place in the Catford Civic Suite on January 23. This workshop centred on goal setting and personal development. Led by Urban Synergy instructor Sonia Nestor, the team, once again made up of Capgemini volunteer mentors and mentees from Christ The King School and St Joseph’s College, completed a variety of tasks. One by one, each task took them on a journey of self-discovery. I do not say this lightly. After one of the later exercises, there was a shared feeling of profoundness about what we had just done. This was followed by a mock journey through the future, where the volunteers visualised where they saw themselves in one year, five years and 10 years. The feedback after this workshop was again all positive with the students mentioning how significant they felt visualisation is and that they realised that they share a lot of similarities to very successful people. Following the programme, the attendees are able to apply to Capgemini’s Degree Apprenticeship Scheme if they wish. As a result of this, I am sure that many of them visualised themselves as a part of the Capgemini family in the future.
All in all, it has been a great start to the programme. The young people are very enthusiastic about the workshops and feel that it is helping them to develop, whilst the mentors are thankful for the opportunity to give back and help the next generation. As someone who had this experience with Urban Synergy a few years ago, it puts a smile on my face to play a part in sharing the experience with others. Wins all round!