Bethan Richmond, Digital Inclusion Programme Manager at Capgemini UK, shares her experience of Capgemini's 'Future Leaders' programme, developed in partnership with The Prince's Trust and Flying Start XP


Capgemini programme supports young peoples career paths

Capgemini programme supports young people's career paths

Bethan Richmond is the Digital Inclusion Programme Manager at Capgemini UK. She has been working with The Prince’s Trust and Flying Start XP to help develop a new programme for young people, ‘Future Leaders’, the first new programme from the Trust for three years. She shares her experience of being involved in this exciting and important programme.

Supporting young people on the road to employment

Capgemini's programme targets a specific group of young people – those who are ready for work, but for various reasons have not yet found employment, or who may be under-employed and on a trajectory below their potential.  During the pilot phase, Capgemini helped 80 young people develop crucial life skills and help them on the path to employment.

The programme was officially launched by Gareth Southgate, who spoke about the skills you need to succeed and the importance of helping young people become self-aware and build confidence to be ‘Future Leaders’.

"The young people coming through the course, have a few things in common that are blocking them from succeeding in meaningful employment: They don’t know what they want to do; they can sometimes feel overwhelmed by the plethora of roles and industries. They often do not appreciate their own strengths and certainly cannot link those to the types of skills an employer might need; and they lack confidence," explains Bethan.

"That’s why the course is focused on helping young people to understand their strengths and natural ways of working, to appreciate the way others work and build the confidence needed to make the first steps into new employment.  We look to support participants as they future proof their skills in the face of the digital revolution, building core capabilities such as critical thinking, team working and problem solving."

"In addition, facilitated by our Capgemini volunteers who share their experiences of working , we try to inspire young people to consider a role in the IT sector, which is so much more than coding alone," she adds.

From Bethan's experience of Capgemini's programme, she has discovered three things that can really help these young people.

Capgemini Future Leaders Programme

Capgemini can help them cut through feelings of career uncertainty

Bethan explains that the digital transformation we are experiencing is having a huge impact on everything including the world of work. She cties an interesting statistic: 73% of our current generation of young people feel less certain than their parents did at their age about future employment.

"Throughout the two days we make sure our young people have a chance to interact and discuss the personal career stories of our own Capgemini volunteers because we know that increasing interactions with employers will increase the chances of young people succeeding in finding employment," she says.

"By sharing our own examples and anecdotes, we create a simple yet surprisingly effective way to broaden horizons, share ideas and showcase that no two routes are the same. It is also important to note that for most in the room, their dream job may not yet exist!"

Capgemini needs to help young people identify strengths

Bethan understands that those in employment might think that they know where their own strengths lie, but like most things, it takes purposeful effort to develop those skills. Understanding strengths – and weaknesses are a key element to success in any job.

This is why Capgemini has worked with Flying Start XP who have created a simple and yet clever way to use the colour personality profiling tool ‘C-Me’ to challenge the student’s reflections into their own strengths, values and behaviours, completely devoid of judgement.

"We all have natural strengths and weaknesses, leaning towards certain ‘colour’ typing in any given situation. Truth is, we’re all a mix of all four with one or two representing more of a comfort zone," explains Bethan.

"Having done this so many times before, with the expert facilitation of Flying Start XP, I found myself reflecting anew and finding that it gave me a whole new way to articulate not only why I work the way that I do, but why others do – and how I might use that to develop the best in them or indeed tweak how I work so they get the best out of me. Our students found the same and the growth in them was tangible!"

Capgemini Future Leaders inclusivity

Capgemini need to help young people build confidence to succeed

It struck Bethan that for but one or two opportunities in her own life, She could very well have been one of these students. She lacked confidence in her own abilities. Even now, for her, it is more a learnt state than a natural one, something she exercises and ‘fakes’ at regularly. 

"Having interacted now with 80 young people through our pilot phase, I can honestly say they lack nothing but a little self-belief, encouragement and opportunity. This is holding them back from applying to jobs and from success at interviews and assessment centres. Consequently, Capgemini and other organisations such as ours are potentially missing out on what could be a rich and diverse talent pool," she adds.

"Part of our course, my favourite bit, presents a practice assessment centre type activity where our young people can apply what they’ve learnt about the colour spectrum, their own ways of working and others’ by giving them a practical chance to adapt and ‘flex other colours’ to help solve the team challenge."

Capgemini can help career growth for the future

Through this course Bethan has witnessed an incredible growth in the students.  For Bethan, the moments when a young person realised they are capable of more than they thought left her with a teary eye.  

"By building upon a person’s natural strengths, boosting confidence and self-belief, together with providing practical like how to establish your personal brand through social media, we are opening up opportunities," she adds.

"I can’t wait to see the long-lasting impacts of this course and how it might lead to the ABCD of employment as The Trust has coined it: A job, a Better job, a Career or  ultimately a Dream job."

Join impressive women like Bethan at Capgemini 

If you want your career to make a positive social impact, you should note that Capgemini employees are committed to helping communities harness the opportunities of digital technology. If this sounds like something for you, take a look at Capgemini's exciting job vacancies and see where your career will take you.

 

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