Dr. Rebecca Wason is an Educator and Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP) with an MBA from Cardiff University, UK. Rebecca has over 14 years of experience in the higher education and healthcare sectors in Canada, the United Arab Emirates and India. She also has a consulting company where she conducts online workshops and provides personal consultations for resume writing, interview preparation and optimizing LinkedIn profiles.
Why did you start mentoring professional newcomers and what keeps you coming back as a mentor?
I came to Canada alone as an immigrant seven years ago and did not have anyone to advise and mentor me. I had to figure things out for myself and break into a professional career on my own. I understand how difficult the struggle is for new immigrants who are often unsupported and lonely. I want to do my part to help because I believe immigrants have a lot to offer to Canadian firms in terms of knowledge, expertise and unique cultural experience.
How have you supported your mentees throughout the partnerships?
I support them by trying to help them understand their own strengths, weaknesses and unique competencies. I teach them to play up their strengths and work on their weak areas so that they can succeed in the Canadian workplace. I help them format their resumes according to Canadian standards, work on their LinkedIn profiles and answer competency-based questions in interviews with confidence. I also help with working towards suitable certifications and networking with professionals in their fields.
What has been your top mentoring moment?
When my first mentee, Sonia landed a job in her professional field.
What advice would you give to someone considering mentoring?
For potential mentors, don’t try to force your dreams on your mentees. Understand their aspirations and guide them towards achieving them. For future mentees, you should believe that you need a mentor if the partnership is to succeed. Be open to your mentor’s suggestions. If the partnership is not going the way you want it to, have the courage to open up and discuss it with your mentor.