Fulcrum’s long association with the Insurance Institute of Gauteng (IIG), in various capacities, delivers strong people dividends.
This year we were fortunate enough to have two of our colleagues involved in the Roots & Wings mentorship programme and the “Class of” programme – respectively, Elaine Pretorius, one of our collections service consultants, and Janine Venter, a product specialist.
The Roots & Wings mentorship programme allows mentees to tap into the experience of their assigned mentor.
“It was a fun and challenging year; a great way to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. This not only challenges you, but inspires and motivates you,” says Pretorius.
Her biggest takeaway from the programme was that she needs to be her own solution, she continues.
“It all depends on how badly you want it, and then making it happen for yourself. It’s about self-confidence and speaking up about where you want to go. It’s also realising that these mentors and the managers at your work are only human.
“They’ve struggled, failed and tried again to get to where they are. It is the drive, dedication and ambition that pushes them. This has made me realise that everybody must start somewhere,” says Pretorius.
Venter echoes this sentiment following her experience with the Class of 2018 programme, where the participants were exposed to, among other things, leadership development.
“Greatness begins beyond your comfort zone. I learned that if I want to achieve more, I need to be more. Everyone is different. There is no need to waste time because of insecurities. I had to move out of my comfort zone, and I will not allow myself to go back.
“I have become more self-aware; being aware of my feelings and emotions, and how to deal with them in all situations,” says Venter.
One of the goals that Pretorius had previously mentioned was that she wanted to speak up more. One of her mentors, Kylie Janssens of Linda Coetzee & Associates, agrees with this statement.
“Elaine is an open and honest person who is willing to grow, and was completely committed to the programme this year,” she says.
The Class of 2018 referred to themselves as a tribe, which strengthened as each member grew personally.
“At our graduation ceremony, held in November, I looked at my tribe members and was proud that we had reached the final stage in our programme – that life is great,” says Venter.
When asked if she would want to be part of another round of Roots & Wings, Pretorius said, “Absolutely! You get to learn and experience so much. You get to learn about yourself through working with others participating in the programme.
“A few of the mentees have inspired me and have motived me, just by watching them grow as we progressed. And while everyone wants something different, we were all there for the same reason: to grow, learn, be empowered and ultimately make ourselves better than when we started.”
Venter also agrees with this, saying she realised that she had learned a lot about herself: “I do believe that by getting to know myself better, I will be able to achieve more. Be more. I am not done yet.”
She adds, “I’m very excited about next year. There is a lot of new and exciting projects that I will be part of. Watch this space.”
Janssens also believes this: “Janine is a resilient, determined young woman who has a quiet kindness about her.”
At Fulcrum we are proud of what these women have achieved, and cannot wait to see what else they bring to our workspace.