Jeanette is our Graduate Office Administrator, and has been with Discovery for two years and five months. Jeanette’s team has recently grown, and since the New Year, she has been managing an administration apprentice. Due to the development of Jeanette’s role, she has been enrolled on the OPEN Programme and just completed her first module. Discovery Performance caught up with her to find out how it went…

What did you expect before Module 1?

Most of all, I expected to learn something! I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect in terms of specific activities but I was determined to get as much out of the experience as possible. I was really nervous, though – I’m not a massive fan of the unknown and I knew I’d be put out of my comfort zone, but I tried to keep an open mind. It definitely helped that I knew who everyone was from the induction day. I might not have spoken to everybody at length, but I knew they were all friendly and driven, so bonding was easier than it would have been otherwise.

What actually happened?

I enjoyed the team-building activities much more than I expected. They were stressful, but because I was in a supportive, safe environment, I felt like I learnt a lot from them. Having the opportunity to try new things in an environment where it didn’t matter if something went wrong was really helpful. I particularly enjoyed one team activity, where I challenged my expectations and took a leading role. The atmosphere during the task was competitive but still supportive, and there was a real sense of achievement when we finished. I also got some really useful feedback from the other delegates which I am planning to build on in my day to day role.

What was the best bit?

On the final day, we all took part in a group feedback session, where we learnt how to give constructive feedback, and then got to practise it. It was really good to learn useful theory and then try it out in a safe environment. I actually found the feedback really inspirational, which I wasn’t expecting – I learnt a lot from the other delegates even though they haven’t known me long.

Another memorable moment was some downtime collaboration – we worked as a team in our spare time as well, you know… By sharing various projection equipment and expertise, we managed to rig up a temporary TV screen to watch the new episode of Game of Thrones one evening!

What was the worst bit?

Doing activities that were so far out of my comfort zone was quite hard and very emotionally draining. However, I was really well-supported and I did learn a lot. I realised that I’m stronger and more capable than I thought as a result of being challenged, which was really valuable.

Top 3 Things I Learnt

1. How neuroscience informs behaviour, and how to use that information to change and develop.

2. I learnt more about myself and my values, as well as reinforcing some things I already knew about who I am.

3. I learnt more about the direction in which I want to go and who I want to be, and gained the confidence that I will be able to get there.

Moving forward…

As far as my hopes for Module 2, I hope I’ll learn as much as I did on Module 1! I’m also really looking forward to working with the other delegates again and seeing how they’ve grown since the last time. Hopefully they’ll be able to see how I’ve grown too! It’s only been a couple of weeks since the module, and I’m still processing the huge amount I learnt, but I feel like I have a much clearer idea of where I want to go from here. I got some important insights from Module 1 about who I want to be and how I want to get there, so I’m making a plan to implement everything I learnt.

Written by Florence Sturt-Hammond