We also offer our employees a mentoring programme. This is a confidential relationship outside the reporting line that helps individuals develop their skills, knowledge and behaviours as well as to move successfully through times of change and transition. Our VCC includes a special search tool that helps our employees identify potential mentors. Currently, around 500 people have registered their interest in being mentored or acting as a mentor.

In 2015, we piloted “reverse mentoring”, enabling senior leaders to learn new skills and hear fresh perspectives from younger employees. The pilot is currently running with 16 mentors and mentees (including our Group CEO). If the pilot is adopted, this will help us bridge generation gaps and support our efforts to develop a truly diverse and inclusive culture throughout the company.

We also continued with our “speed mentoring”, involving 27 mentors and mentees. This offers a more informal way of mentoring where an equal number of mentees and mentors meet in pairs and chat for a few minutes before they move on to the next person. “Speed mentoring” gives mentees a chance to meet all prospective mentors in the room and to make their best-suited selection afterwards. It continues to be a greatly appreciated initiative.