By: Dr. Sharmini Perea – Ph.D (Malaysia), MBA (Australia).
Certified Coach and Mentor by the International Authority for Professional Coaching and Mentoring,
Head, Faculty of Business Studies.
Lead, Office of Mentoring and Coaching.
Sri Lanka Technological Campus
Today, we live in a time of uncertainty more than ever and the Businesses are striving through these profound uncertainties.
This may also be a time that individuals are experiencing more emotional and psychological stress and seeking for ways to be focused and improve their potential towards success.
This made me pen down these thoughts from one of my pet areas of discussions at all times that contributes to the development of an individual to realize their optimum potential especially for the young generation who are following their higher education and that may join the future workplace or become an entrepreneur.
What is the Importance of Self-Reflection?
I have always been inspired by the thoughts shared by the scholars, celebrities and role models as to how self-reflection helped them to re-design their own-selves. “You cannot have a meaningful life without having self-reflection” says Oprah Winfrey. Self-reflection provides you the platform to listen to yourself, see through your own emotions, beliefs, values and thoughts as a third party. Unless otherwise one has a good awareness about one’s own self it may be challenging to realize your own self-worth.
Especially, the younger generation who are at a juncture seeking for higher educational opportunities must first become aware about their own passion which may be supported with the continuous development of required competencies for a meaningful future. In the learning process the final outcome must always be directed towards a positive behavioral change. Thus, a good combination of self-reflection, self-regulation will lead to a meaningful self-direction.
Who is a Coach and a Mentor?
A Coach and a Mentor always aims at supporting their Coachees or Mentees to unleash one’s own optimum potential. There is a distinguish difference between a Coach and a Mentor. A Coach (in the fields of professional, education, management, life etc) will have more focused discussions aimed at creating the environment to his/her Coachee to realize their own purpose and goals that they need to action on. Similarly, a Mentor will also take the same direction.
However, the Mentor could be a Senior and well experienced person. Therefore, they may share their experiences while facilitating the discussions with their mentees.
How will any Individual Benefit from a Coach or a Mentor?
A Coach or a Mentor will continue to challenge an individual to reflect upon their own life, set a clear goal/s that they wish to accomplish in a given time period. Once understood about the personal goals, the Coach or the Mentor will have professional discussions aimed at encouraging and challenging these individuals to develop their own action plans that need to be in action to reach their goals.
The progress will be closely monitored with a considerable amount of feedback to re-shape your way toward successfully achieving your own life goals. If I relate this to the higher education sector, the young generations must be clearly aware about their own futuristic goals and opportunities especially in very turbulent environment that we live today.
Therefore, focus and adaptability plays a key role in both survival and achievement. Thus, the young students must select their higher education opportunities with a clear purpose and continue to learn, unlearn and relearn to position themselves in this competitive as well as challenging business world. If you may have a Coach or a Mentor at the very younger age of your life you will be able to obtain their support to make your own decisions with much competence as they will continue to influence, challenge and monitor your progress with you.
At Sri Lanka Technological Campus (SLTC), the role I perform and mostly enjoy is been the Lead, Mentoring and Coaching. As a certified Coach and a Mentor, I very much see the impact and the satisfaction is endless to see how these young individuals create their paths in life to be a person who make a strong impact to bring about a change through right values while gaining their academic knowledge. At SLTC our students are assigned with a personal mentor from the very inception at their enrollment and throughout their life at SLTC they are been influenced and supported for higher performance with encouragement to keep developing their right attitude and behavior on a focused goal.
As a Coach who is also involved in the industry to conduct Coaching, I understand the importance of developing individuals from their young age so that they are able to bridge the gap between the academia and industry skills and behaviours required.
If you wish your life were different… do your life differently.” -Terence Houlihan. My recommendation is therefore, select your Coach or Mentor and be coached, be mentored at every possible instance as you make an attempt to strive forward. It works! Simply because it’s all about YOU and creates YOUR path to realize YOUR dreams by connecting with YOUR own self.