Meet Yoko Bell and Brian Egan.

Yoko was mentored by Brian in 2018 through TIME’s 29th program intake. We asked them for recollections of their shared TIME experience as Mentor and Mentee.

Here’s what they had to say.

YOKO: Mentee

What drew you to the TIME program?
My curiosity to learn more about the Aviation Industry – understanding all the key elements of what drives and influences the aviation world and how I can improve and increase my knowledge, personal brand and network.

What do you recall from your first session with Brian?
From first reading Brian’s profile, I was energised and enthused to meet a gentleman overflowing with knowledge and experience – Brian was consistently so willing to share his experiences and knowledge.

What did you find the most challenging part of your TIME mentoring experience?
Knowing the fact that I had to deliver a 3-minute presentation on graduation day, in order to acquire my certificate of completion – I am absolutely terrified of public speaking! However, Brian coached me on how to get through this obstacle – and not around it!

The most rewarding?
Gaining the confidence that I now have. Having a clear direction on life and career goals and being comfortable to push out of my comfort zone.

What specific learnings from your experience guide you in your career now?
Be curious, ask the questions, be bold in your approach and recognise the confidence already existing within yourself.

In what ways do you feel your career prospects have been enhanced by your TIME experience?
Acquiring more knowledge about the Travel Industry and having a better understanding of the multiple aspects which make up the business (airline specifically), provides a clarity in career direction. To an extent, the experience can be applied to a career in any industry.

Who should consider being a Mentee?
ANYONE who has the drive and hunger to learn and grow, both in a professional and personal sense.

Describe your TIME experience in three ways.
TIME has no boundaries
Confidence boosting goodness

BRIAN: Mentor

How did you get involved in the TIME program?
A work colleague suggested it might be something I would find appealing, as I had finished full time work. I found mentoring was a great option to remain active and interested in the industry.

Travel has always excited me and that is why I worked in this industry. I was incredibly fortunate to work with a great organisation over many years. As such I felt I could help like-minded people develop a long travel industry career.

How many TIME participants have you mentored?
Under TIME, I have mentored Yoko only to date. I do keep close contact with a few people I have worked with and for, discussing industry events.

How would you describe Yoko’s development through the mentoring experience?
Yoko was a bundle of enthusiasm from day one. There was a keen interest to expand her knowledge – so much to absorb, so little time! I think that’s why we hit it off so well. She committed to the program and her employer was also committed to the program (very important). At the end of the formal sessions (I don’t think it actually ends there), she had a very clear focus on career goals, where she was, where she is and where she is going. The learning will not stop.

What was the most rewarding thing for you about mentoring Yoko?
Yoko wanted development. She clearly grew as a person during the formal sessions becoming a lot more confident about herself and her abilities. To have her give a product presentation to her manager and peers at the end was for her, a triumph.

Mentors often say that they learn many things from their mentees, what did you learn from Yoko?
Relax, don’t take yourself so seriously!
If you’re not really enthusiastic about what you’re doing, it’s time to look for something new.

Have you ever had a Mentor?
Whilst I have never had a formal mentor, the Australian management group I was part of were always a great sounding board to raise issues with, as well as seek opinions and advice. Our industry is also made up of people who willingly share their skills and learning, so indirectly there has been some mentoring.

I think it would improve many organisations to have formal mentoring as an ongoing aid to a career.