Mentor Yu-Chia, working with Program Control Services at Accenture in Amsterdam, wanted to build a one on one relationship with a refugee. For this reason, she chose to join the Accenture refugee coaching program. “We all have a stereotypical idea of refugees, but once you meet someone in person, you realize how much you relate to each other, and how much you share goals for the future”. “I always had the idea of a refugee coming by boat from the Mediterranean, but my mentee came as a political refugee from China, which opened my eyes”. For Yu-Chia and her mentee the program primarily consisted of talks over coffee: “I mainly just asked questions and shared my understanding of the Dutch work culture and ways to find a job”, “Sometimes, I offered connections and practical advice on his application”.
“My mentor and I were a great match”, says Mehmet, one of the mentees of the coaching program. His mentor was working in the security branch within Accenture. “I was in pursuit of finding the best direction to further my focus in the IT sector but since that is so broad, I needed some advice and guidance on where my previous experience and skills could fit best”. Mehmet and his mentor met on a weekly basis and apart from the advice he received on his CV and applications, his mentor gave him the motivation he needed and helped him connect to people within his network to provide a better picture of the different departments. Now, at the end of this coaching program, Mehmet was offered a job starting in March. He believes this coaching program helped him find his job: “After everything I have been through, my mentor helped me regain my motivation to stand up and get back into the work life, which was hard at times, while building a new life in the Netherlands”.
Mentee Mohamad from Afghanistan (studied in India) started his job last month in information security management for a software company which develops customer feedback software. “Sometimes I felt broken and thought I would never succeed in this country, but my mentor kept on encouraging me”. His mentor searched within his network for connections, collected feedback on his CV and applications and advised him on presenting himself. “I would definitely recommend this program to others. Everything starts with having a network, this program will help you build one”.
Next month Accenture’s coaching program will proceed with a new round of coaching. The program starts with a kick-off on March 20th. Participants will be selected in the upcoming weeks.