Super charging graduate
conversation skills with Westpac
Wesptac Bank is one of Australia’s top 4 banking institutions with a long history in the financial services industry. The Symes Group, led by Jessica Symes, were engaged to contribute to their yearly graduate programme. Delivering 7 days of interactive learning over a 9-month period, the focus was on helping the graduates to build better self-awareness and relationship building skills that they can take forward into their roles within the organisation.
The cohort of 140 graduates where introduced to a range of tools and insights, including the Facet5 Personality Profile, Facet5 Spotlight and the Facet5 SuperSkills of Great Conversations profile. The sessions aimed to build both awareness of the individual’s preferences and natural style, as well as practical skills that could be used when leaving the workshops. As with any good learning process; insights are great, practicing skills is essential and reflection brings learning – and to support this and maintain ‘learning’ momentum, the time between sessions was dedicated to this practice; applying their new skills and reflecting on the success or failure of their approach.
The Facet5 SuperSkills of Great Conversations session focused on helping the graduates understand their own preferences and challenges when it comes to having great conversations. Working through each SuperSkill, Symes Group used practical tools and examples that allowed them to practice and reflect on their approach to understand where each SuperSkill felt natural or where more effort was required.
Insights from the group when applying their new SuperSkills knowledge was that while some conversations seemed effortless and some more effortful, every conversation has the potential to be better and more meaningful. The process helped individuals to be more mindful and open to what was being said while also at the same time being aware of their own biases. By the end of the process they felt more inclined to voice their viewpoints in a constructive way and to also watch for and respond to the other persons conversational needs.
The ability to have meaningful conversations with others underpins the way we create great relationships, build trust, engage and inspire. By supporting the graduates with these foundational insights and skills, Westpac have provided them with a work-life skill that they will carry with them through their career.
Jessica also felt that she learnt a lot about her own personal style during this programme. With vast experience and expertise in Facet5, Jessica commented that the richness of the data allowed her to flex and update her own style to that of the group. Course correction in the moment became easier, leading to a more tailored learning experience for the group.
‘I would recommend every graduate experience’s the SuperSkills programme. It provides a foundation of knowledge and skill that is essential at work and home. Graduates leave with not only a better understanding of themselves but also what they can do to further improve on the conversational capability and realise their potential’.
About the Symes Group:
Led by Jessica Symes, Symes Group is a leadership and coaching consultancy. Jessica Symes is an executive and career coach with a Masters in Applied Science (Psychology of Coaching) from The University of Sydney.
Symes Group is passionate about helping individuals take ownership of their careers, to communicate and collaborate with exceptional superhuman skills to thrive in positive, purposeful and meaningful workplaces.
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