Mentorship is a powerful tool that can help rapidly-scaling businesses keep their people learning, motivated and engaged during times of growth and transition.
Kiabi Carson, the head of North American human resources for Turner and Townsend, an international consulting firm, knows this all too well. In her role, Kiabi is responsible for setting HR strategy and is accountable for the full scope of HR functions across the rapidly expanding region. As the company’s U.S. operations ballooned from 175 to 600 employees, Carson was focused on ensuring that they could continue to support and develop key talent.
However, it can be hard to rely on line managers to develop their people because not everyone has the time or experience to do so. That’s why Turner and Townsend decided to lean on Everwise: to gain a helpful hand supporting employees in a systematic way
How did Kiabi work with Everwise?
Carson was extremely dedicated to helping her employees succeed. She especially liked the idea of providing an external mentor because that would give participants the freedom to have a truly open dialogue with someone who had been in a similar situation and who could use his or her own experience to provide guidance. In addition to mentoring, Carson wanted to provide plenty of learning and development resources, which Everwise could provide on its platform.
Turner and Townsend started with an Everwise mentoring pilot, then doubled the size of the program when word got out and interest spread.
“Everyone who completed the program really felt like they had someone outside our business who understood what they were trying to achieve,” Carson said. “They really felt invested in.”
In addition to running the mentorship program, Carson participated as a protege as well. Even with 18-plus years of pharmaceutical, financial services, and consultant experience, she always valued the opportunity to keep learning, growing and challenging herself. This was also a great way to experience the program firsthand, which gave her keen insight to help manage and administer the program.
“I had a female mentor, and for me as a woman leader in a male dominated industry, it was great to work with another woman leader who’s been through some of the same things and can offer support and guidance,” said Carson, the only female leader on her region’s executive board. “She’s been there and done that.”
What’s next for Kiabi Carson and Turner & Townsend
Globally, Turner & Townsend wants to specifically nurture its female talent and is investigating ways to develop them further. Across companies and industries nationwide, there’s so much room for female advancement. Some studies show that despite the fact that women make up about 50 percent of the workforce, they still only account for only 14 percent of CEO positions.
The workplace isn’t the only place where Carson shows her dedication. In addition to being a passionate professional at work, where she supports her team, Carson is also equally invested in her family and professional growth. As a mother of 2 children her weekends are full of Little League, golf, art classes and errands! But she still finds time to stay active in her sorority, network, and give back through community service work. “To whom much is given, much is expected,” says Carson.
Carson’s dedication continues to help Turner and Townsend’s mentoring program become a success. It is also laying the foundation for employees and managers to drive their own personal development. For more details on how Everwise can make a difference in the workplace, visit our website.