I used my coaching and leadership experience to give back
This post is part of our peer counselor Q&A series which shares the perspectives of our talented volunteers. Sabrina is an Empower Work peer counselor and Professional Certified Coach (PCC). She has 20 years of leadership experience and is passionate about helping people master their mindset, improve skills and overcome the common challenges that keep them stuck in life and at work.
What inspired you to become a volunteer?
I was excited to learn that Empower Work is a free service that anyone in the US can use without needing sponsorship from their employer. As I learned more about the organization, I felt passionate about getting involved directly. I wanted to use my coaching and leadership experience to give back to people facing work issues. This seemed like a great professional development opportunity.
What was the most valuable part of the training experience for you?
The training was very well organized, thoughtful, and well designed to help you learn and apply coaching techniques in an impactful way. The live training groups were an encouraging and safe place to observe and hone your skills before talking to real texters.
What has surprised you most about being on the line?
It was shocking to see how many people are struggling with very serious workplace situations, and the lack of support they have within their own organization. However, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how accountable and productive most people are in wanting to find a solution and move forward in an empowered way.
How has volunteering helped strengthen your professional skills?
As a peer counselor we get exposure to a broader demographic and more variety of workplace challenges than I experienced in my own workplace. My interactions with Empower Work texters help me grow and learn as a coach. As a senior leader, it’s given me more awareness and empathy for the secret struggles and experiences our team members may be experiencing even long before we know about it. It has also made me more aware of fairness and equality.
What would you tell other people thinking about becoming volunteers?
You will benefit from volunteering with Empower Work as much as the people you serve! You will improve your communication skills, listening skills, and leadership skills. Volunteering will help you learn how to lead and empower others through the process of problem solving.