The Power of Mentoring
My daughter gave me tickets to the Wizard of Oz for Christmas; we truly enjoyed the show, little did I realize that I would soon experience a real life Wiz.
I was privileged to be invited to speak to the emPOWERed Women’s Forum, to witness the 9th graduation of 31 new emPOWERed women.
The event was held at the head office of OPG, Ontario Power Generation on University Avenue.
I listened as the valedictorians shared their experience. They talked about learning to speak up and speak out, to finding their “inner leader” and to recognizing that they now had an “empower spirit”. I saw a group of dynamic women encouraging each other and applauding their fellow grads.
While there was no “yellow brick road” at OPG, there was indeed a Wizard behind the curtain. I didn’t see Scarecrow, Tin Man or the Cowardly Lion, what I did see were women who were no longer afraid, who have become inspired, and have learned to use their talents with more measurable results.
Does the learning they have done over a 3 month period, give them the courage needed to succeed? Have they found new heart within themselves? Are they using their intellect more effectively? Absolutely!
How did it happen? If we think about the Wizard of Oz – Dorothy was unhappy, she felt that she didn’t fit in, that she was just another cog in the wheel. It wasn’t until she found herself in Oz that she realized that with the help of her new found friends, Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion, she would find out that “there is no place like home!”
While Colleen Sidford, didn’t meet Dorothy, she did recognize that the women at OPG were looking for something especially for them. As Vice President – Chief Investment Officer she became the Wizard behind this curtain and developed an extensive 3 month program, called the EmPOWERed Women Mentoring Program. This gave them the opportunity to follow their heart, to be courageous and make better use of their brains. This is a program that has helped 571 women become “empowered”.
I quickly learned that OPG embraces diversity in its broadest sense – making it an integral part of their business practice. OPG provides opportunities for all employees to broaden their horizons, to expand their interests and increase their capabilities. Sounds like more words from the Wizard! This time it’s from Tom Mitchell, President and Chief Executive Officer, he encourages his employees to “Aim High, to Diversify and to Take Some Risks” He says, “My job is to set the stage; yours is to have the confidence to ‘take the stage’.”
While there is no yellow brick road at OPG, there is plenty of opportunity – you just need to reach out, get involved and use your skills!
Take heart, be brave and use your brains; you might find out “there is no place like home at OPG!” www.opg.com