Mark Axworthy, Household Claims M & I Analyst from Aviva in Perth, volunteered as a mentor in 2018. Here, he shares how it helped him become the team manager he aspired to be.

When I started my Career Ready journey, I was a data analyst within Aviva Household Claims and aspired to lead one of the teams. Being a manager and a leader involves the same skills as being a mentor. Listening, coaching, and building relationships; I decided to volunteer so that I could develop these skills as well as give something back.

Mentoring gave me a real confidence that I could make a difference through coaching and help people get to where they need or want to be. I became a manager during my two years as a mentor and all of the skills I developed mentoring still help me in my role today.

The satisfaction of seeing my mentee progress over the two-year mentoring relationship was fantastic. I see no downside in volunteering in this way at all. The whole process was awesome.

When I first met my mentee, Murrhlyn, she was very shy and lacked confidence. She didn’t believe she could get a job after leaving school, let alone have any idea as to what she wanted to do.

I was able to help a young student progress in her career, I was able to better my professional skills and Aviva gained a valuable member of staff during the work experience process.

It took time to build trust, and I wasn’t quite ready for how tough the relationship building would be. After getting her some work experience at Aviva, she excelled herself and I felt within the 2 years of mentoring, the young, shy and naive girl I met on day one had turned into a brave young woman.

I have been involved with different programs but this one was the best. I have a sense of pride, knowing I have given something back to my local community. If I had anything close to career ready when growing up and leaving school, it would have helped me significantly.

Discover how you can make a difference to a young person’s life as a volunteer.