On your marks, get set, go…….. Orientation Week – GT16


After a gruelling selection process Victoria, Charizelle, Nicola, Olivier, & Paul, seen above with Ilamathy during her visit, began their Growing Talent journey with the Orientation Week commencing 5 February at Southwark Cathedral.


The purpose of the Orientation Week is to grow confidence before going onto the employer’s site to train in the vacant role.


A lot of hesitancy on what to expect on day one was quickly replaced with self-confidence and enthusiasm to get started….. so what did they get up to?


Monday consisted of getting to know you exercises and setting the foundation for what lie ahead.  In the afternoon, the running theme of Social Enterprise ideas were thrashed out.  We would work on this consistently all week.


Tuesday largely focussed on Communication.  Jade Luke of Customer Care First delivered various tasks – including putting yourself in birthday order without speaking – hilarious and negotiating for the missing piece of puzzle that another team had!


Wednesday was learning the tools for getting cvs upto date and tricks to make them bespoke for every job.  We also did a quick fire presentation on selling an everyday object with an extraordinary USP!


Ilamathy (with the guys in the feature photo) also joined us for a confidential chat with the Growing Talent Associates to share her story and offer them advice and guidance.  Ilamathy is Recruitment Consultant and Queen of Social Media at Red Personnel and will be Nicola’s mentor on the Growing Talent journey…… Thank you for the chocolates too Ilamathy!


Thursday saw the 3Rs workshop by PwC’s Lesley Davies – Refuel, Renewal & Rejuvenate.  Lesley shared tips and logic behind staying awake at work, the right nutrition, sleep etc.


Friday saw the Social Enterprise Judging Panel!  Judges left to right below are Pedro from Pertemps, Jordan – who did Growing Talent in the very beginning, worked for Portico for over 2 years and then lived his dream of living and working in New Zealand and Australia for 2 years before returning to the UK 2 weeks before this photo! Allen Salmon – Head Judge from PwC and Anna Matthews from JobCentre Plus.

They had a really tough time as all three ideas were so good and well delivered….


First to present were Olivier and Paul with their community engagement programme.  Next was Victoria and Nicola with their allotment, nutrition and community engagement idea – brilliantly delivered with examples of vegetable stater packs, business cards etc!  Finally, Charizelle and Tara delivered their art and music project – a drop in centre for the community which had specialist counsellors to deliver help and advice.


After much deliberation, the judges agreed Victoria (on the right) & Nicola were the winners and Allen presented their £10 each cash prize – which we hope they spent unwisely!