Mentee: Danielle Spiers, Cushman & Wakefield
Mentor: Lisa Risk, Bizspace Ltd
Danielle, a trainee surveyor with Cushman & Wakefield, was introduced to both Women in Property and Mentoring by Joanna Embling, formerly equity partner.
"I went to the WiP mentoring training and was then paired up with my mentor, Lisa, who has been really supportive and helpful. I feel I could turn to her about anything.
"I'm at an early stage in my career, as I'm currently a trainee surveyor and, at the same time, studying for a degree which runs for another two years. After that I'm hoping to join the graduate programme which runs for a further three years. Bearing all this in mind, I felt that I didn't want long term targets for the mentoring as there were plenty more immediate issues to deal with.
"So, we meet every six weeks or so, with occasional phone calls in between and, at each meeting, we agree my goals for the next few weeks. In this way Lisa has helped me on both a personal and professional level. She has also really boosted my confidence - I came to property via a slightly different route to the 'norm' and also have a young child, so there are plenty of challenges. I wasn't sure I'd be able to do it. With Lisa's encouragement and the support of my employer, I know I definitely can!"
Lisa is Property Director of Bizspace. Describing herself as a 'mentoring virgin', she says 'I love it, it's the best thing I do'.
"It's a pleasure working with Danielle. She is very open and responsive and in just one year we can both see the amazing changes that are happening for her. At each meeting we discuss how to approach work issues and agree a way forward, she really works hard on the areas we identify.
"From my own point of view, I have undoubtedly learned a lot which helps me in my own professional life, where I head a small team. I have also just found out that I can use mentoring as evidence towards achieving my FRICS which is a real and unexpected bonus.
"And, being completely honest, it is a great confidence boost for me too - senior people within my own organisation are aware of it and have commented. I'd recommend it to anybody, so much so that I'm looking for a mentor myself."
Another success story:
Danielle was nominated by University of Westminster for her "outstanding performance" and won RICS London and South East Award in March 2010.