September 9, 2021
“Making a small contribution to making the gender ratio more balanced is my personal incentive.”
Today we interviewed Janina, who participated in our mentoring program as a mentor. The interview was conducted by Katharina Platzer. Katharina is currently studying for her master’s degree and works part-time as a product owner in the automotive sector and volunteers for moinworld.
Janina, please introduce yourself briefly.
I’m 35 and have been working in marketing for more than ten years, and my heart clearly beats for digital strategies. Over time, I’ve become more and more focused on websites, search engine optimization, digital campaigns and analytics. As Interim VP Marketing, however, I currently coordinate all marketing activities together with my team at Stibo DX, which of course also includes events and offline campaigns. My job is to make Stibo DX’s content and digital asset management systems even better known to media companies and brand publishers around the world.
When did you join the mentoring program?
I applied at the end of December 2020 and then started my first mentoring round with Alline in February 2021. We completed our six sessions in fivemonths and met her goal. I enjoyed it so much that I’d like to continue as a mentor.
Why did you join the mentoring program?
I took a beginner HTML/CSS course at moinworld a few years ago and that’s how I became aware of the program. I think the idea of making it easier for women to get started in the IT world or specifically supporting them on their path is great. Even though I often have female colleagues in marketing myself, I have made the experience that things are usually different in IT companies on the technical side. There, the proportion of men remains high. I think that’s a shame, because I firmly believe that diverse companies are more successful on many levels. Making a small contribution to making this gender ratio more balanced is my personal incentive.
What do you like most about being a mentor?
It’s not that easy, because I’ve really enjoyed the program overall. I really enjoy sharing my own experiences and helping a mentee develop in the direction he/she chooses. Sometimes just one or two questions from the mentor are enough to open up a new perspective on a problem or issue. In the best case, this stimulates an exchange in which I, as a mentor, can also broaden my perspective and gain new perspectives. In my opinion, this is a win-win situation for both sides.
What is the relationship like with your mentee? What do you have in common?
Alline and I hit it off great right from our first digital meeting and had a connection. During our mentoring session, she described situations that I found myself in a lot because I had experienced them myself in the same or a similar way. Of course, this makes it easy to get involved with each other and to treat each other with respect and trust. Even if we can’t see each other in person, but “only” via video call. I think we are both rather reserved and not very extroverted. We’ve also found that my experience with website relaunch projects means I can easily relate to her workflow as an app developer.
What is everyday life like between you and your mentee? What experiences have you had?
We arranged to meet over five months for six sessions exclusively via video call. Most of the time, we had an intense exchange for about an hour. I tried to give Alline small assignments or always podcast, video, or reading recommendations to go along with each session’s focus. We divided her big goal into several small stage goals and approached it bit by bit. In the end, she was quite surprised at how much her perspective on the “problem” changed during the time. Of course, we stayed in contact and exchanged ideas beyond the sessions. Creating such a basis of trust is very important in my opinion. In the end, we both found that we had a very good time together and found the sessions less like “work” and more like fun.
What did you learn during your time together?
For me it was amazing to see how little it sometimes takes to help someone. At the beginning, I wasn’t sure how much I could really support a developer, because I come from a completely different field and am not a “techie”. However, it turned out that mentoring is much less about expertise and more about your own wealth of experience. In our last session, we simulated a job interview. That was an exciting experience for me in English and also good preparation. Because a few weeks later I actually did it again in my day-to-day job and interviewed applicants in the USA.
Would you recommend the mentoring program to others?
One hundred percent. I think it’s a great program and can imagine taking part as a mentee one day. It’s a great experience to closely accompany a mentee on his/her professional path for six months. The regular community events are also extremely enriching, because they always give me new impetus for my job with very different topics and make me look at things differently or question them.
Autorin: Katharina Platzer (ihr könnt sie hier bei Linkedin finden)
Author: Katharina Platzer (you can find her on Linkedin here)
Apply today here. A moinworld member will get in touch with you for the next steps within 1 week.
Do you have any questions? Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will also have a Meetup celebrating the ending of our first mentors and mentees batch in September. Everybody is welcome to join and listen to some of the success stories. Just follow our events!
Read more about some of our great mentors here.