#MyHRDiary: My Covid19 and Mentorship Story

#MyHRDiary: My Covid19 and Mentorship Story

Welcome to another episode of #MyHRDiary. a diary series in the life of an HR Professional.

As an HR Professional who has a wide network and belong to lots of HR Groups, you can guess I had my fair share of proper briefing when it got to managing the Covid-19 situation. It was all over that this is the time for HR Professionals to position themselves as strategic business partners etc. I read various writeups about how to manage it well and I felt prepared (in my mind)

For me, I think I managed it PRETTY well at the beginning (to the point that I was even advising senior colleagues on how I managed it in my own organization). I ensured I brought all managers on board and drove the process of WFH seamlessly because we are a tech company and it looked easy but I was proud of my approach to the smooth sailing

When the official lockdown started and more planning needed to be done, I had already prepared a document with a projection of what may happen and what needed to be done but dates projected was coming closer than expected and I was in a fix.

I became a bit emotional about some decisions that needed to be made so I tried my best to be considerate in both ways (people and business side). Before making a decision, I had a rethink and kept pondering about how to have a win-win situation and thinking too much like a chess player that I am made it stressful.

Then I decided not to bear that burden alone. Why work within my own limited knowledge and capacity when I can tap within my network of senior HR friends? I was so happy that suggestion came into my head at that time so I immediately rushed to record a distressing voice note asking for advice on my options and the best way to handle it.

It’s like I already knew what to do but I needed people with more experience to share theirs so that I can be sure or I needed to have a rethink. After sharing with about 6 different senior colleagues, I was amazed at the response rate and the depth of their analysis. Truly, you really can’t buy experience neither can you acquire it in a hurry. I heard some high-level analysis, I began to question myself if I had the capacity.

But I knew I was resting on the shoulders on decades of experience so I became optimistic. Because of what I do with CareerLife Nigeria, I also provide mentorship to young professionals on career issues and even some HR issues based on my own experience but the kind of solutions I got made me realize I still have a LONG way to go in this HR journey. I can only take one step at a time and be grateful for each moment of learning.

So to young ones out there, don’t just have a mentor for title sake. Be open to invite them when you get to a cross road. It’s only in those moments, you would understand the value of mentors. I have learned to segment some colleagues in their areas of their strength. E.g if I need advice related to Employee Relations or L&D, I know the sets of people to call. I won’t say I stumbled on them. I have intentionally built relationships in those areas and I try to keep the fire burning by frequently running ideas by them. They also do the same with me.


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Yewande Jinadu

Yewande Jinadu is the Founder of CareerLife Nigeria(careerlife.com.ng) and also a Strategic HR Business Partner of a leading tech firm. She's a certified HR Professional with a mix of Generalist and Specialist Experience who supports the business to achieve it's goals through the people. Her strengths are in Talent Acquisition, Performance Management, Employee Engagement, Organization Development and Employer Branding. Her social initiative, CareerLife Foundation solving UN SDG Goal 8 is aimed at reducing unemployment by helping graduates and professionals become Employable and accelerate their career growth. With various awards won both locally and globally, her vision is to help millions of youths achieve measurable success in their career. Yewande holds the Senior Professional of Human Resources International (SPHRi) Certification from the Human Resources Certification Institute (HRCI), USA. She is an associate of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (ACIPM) and has a Practitioners License to practice HR in Nigeria. She's the Convener of the Employability Fitness Program, an initiative aimed at helping young graduates overcome interview Phobia and the barriers in Recruitment process through mentoring. She is a public speaker and has been featured on various media platforms including: BellaNaija, SheLeadsAfrica, GuardianWoman, Women of Rubies etc Some of her recognitions include: Top 50 Career Influencers in Africa by The Workbooth Magazine and also a the top 10 Platinum members of Career Influencers. Top 150 Global HR Influencer by Social Micole. Top 100 Career Women in Nigeria by 9to5Chick Top 30 Leading Women in HR by Worden HCD You can reach out to her by sending a mail to: info@careerlife.com.ng and follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @careerlifeng

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