Having someone to guide me in reflecting on and improving myself has always been an aspiration of mine. Even though I have already worked in more than three companies, I only had faint notions of what it is like to have a mentor or personal coach. I wished for someone who gave honest feedback and invested some time to get to know me personally, to advise me on how to leverage my personal traits optimally in a professional context. This is why PREMIUM having a 1:1 coaching for Personal development was a Unique Selling Point for me.
Within the program, my coach Adina Petre is a self-employed clinical psychologist who is also working at FASoS. I quickly discovered that she has a great sense of humour and that we have a shared aversion towards wasting natural resources by printing out documents. The PREMIUM program provides one such document as a guideline towards working on and documenting the self-development journey. It gives the opportunity for reflection, goal setting and feedback in collaboration with the mentor. I shared this with Adina prior to our first session -one of three during the program- and Adina had gone through and noted down interesting or important points as well as input needing clarification: I’m a little cryptic sometimes.
Located in a hip co-working space, I met Adina in her cosy, Chintz-chaired office for nearly 2 hours. She gave me a little tour of the facilities and even graciously offered up the open co-working space as a workstation for me (which I’ll surely take her up on!). When we settled into her office, I realized this was usually the place for her therapy sessions. Upon this realization, I became conscious of how I expressed myself and how I answered even her simple introductory questions, mostly because I suddenly feared to answer wrongly somehow and be diagnosed as a crazy person. When I told her this, we had a laugh and the feeling passed quickly as we got into a dialogue. Since I had already put quite some time into the self-reflection and preparation thorough filling out the document as well as the „Discover your competencies“-Workshop, I felt rather confident in my opinions and conclusions. I had worked out my « flaws » and which traits I wanted to improve on. I had to admit though, being a perfectionist, my list had gotten quite long. Apparently remarking this as well, Alina asked me to name the most important improvement goal from the top of my head without checking what I had written down, to see which one naturally came to mind. One of the points we closely discussed was in fact the effect of this perfectionism on other people. And since then, I am more aware of my behaviour and its consequences for others.
What was really interesting overall, was what Adina chose to focus on. While we went through the points she had noted down, we also discussed far and beyond. As a first session takeaway, Alina gave me references prevalent to my interests and questions. After having a look at these, I now have a new round of questions and I am looking forward to our next session.
Written by Maria Diederich (SBE)
PREMIUM Student 2019-2020