Thursday, 3 December 2015

Welsh Apprentice Challenge - hear from the winning mentor!

The first ever Welsh Apprentice Challenge was launched at Community Housing Cymru's Annual Conference on 19th November. 15 apprentices were nominated from all over Wales and were split into three teams. Each team faced the following challenge: 

How can we promote housing as a career of choice for young people?

I mentored the imaginatively named 'Team 3' which was made up of Emily (Cartrefi Conwy), Mathew (Coastal Housing Group), Karolina (Monmouthshire Housing), Oliver (Newport City Homes) and Daniel (Taff Housing Association). My team focused their presentation around a slogan of 'Find a Home For your Talents', recognising that the diversity of roles available in the housing sector should be promoted more widely. 

During their research, the team failed to find any delegates who had consciously made the decision at school to go in to housing, nor any member of the public on the streets in Cardiff that had considered housing as a career. The team highlighted that other sectors, such as the Army, had very effectively developed marketing and advertising demonstrating that there is a far wider variety of roles in the Army than fighting at the front line. 

As the other teams also referred to on the final day, an obvious approach to engaging younger people is through social media. Emily pointed out that, according to research, young people look at their phones over 160 times a day. This means that using Twitter, Snapchat and LinkedIn would be far more productive than leaflets and advertisements. 

The team members themselves demonstrated the wide variety of job opportunities available as they were from such varied roles such as a gas engineer, business administrators, a carpenter and a plumber. 

After two days of discussing, researching, preparing and practising, it was finally time to present the team's ideas to the Annual Conference delegates. All three team members did a fantastic job of presenting their ideas, then it was over to the delegates to choose the winner... it was a win for Team 3!

Lots of conference attendees have commented that the Apprentice Challenge was the highlight of the conference, and I certainly got a lot out of it along with my fellow mentors. Most importantly, the apprentices themselves thoroughly enjoyed the experience and felt that their confidence grew throughout the two days.
Come to housing and find a home for your talents!

Jason Wroe
Newydd Housing Association

1 comment:

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