Last year B&W Energy Services launched a program that promised a deeper investment in our highly valued team. Driven by a desire to jump start our employees’ experience and knowledge, B&W’s Mentoring Program was born. The leadership team of B&W felt that establishing such a program would provide benefits to our customers beyond what has been available in the industry previously. By investing in all staff members, the performance level on site at projects is raised resulting in better outcomes.
The program allows senior staff to intentionally develop the professionalism and skills of new hires and junior staff that they are expected to master as a part of the B&W team. Through the program, employees get personalized guidance and knowledge that is unique to their position and abilities, adding to their value as team members at B&W, while also growing their professional network as they get significant face time with leaders in the energy industry. In its eight months of existence, the program has seen incredible development and has overcome a few challenges along the way– but no path to success is ever easy.
From navigating practical application of the vision behind B&W’s Mentoring Program, to economically devoting time to each mentorship, the program has made it through its fair share of trials. When the program began, our very own Billy Williams and Tom McGlade led mentorships with numerous employees, yet with the time our industry demands of our senior staff, devoting enough time to each team member became difficult. As the two talent development specialists at B&W, Williams and McGlade built out staff into four tiers for mentoring. To ensure each mentorship was truly beneficial, the program grew to include seven other lead mentors from Tier 4, each of whom has been on the B&W team for more than five years. The expansion of mentors has helped with the time constraints on senior level staff, while also giving us a new arsenal of knowledge to draw upon.
One of the greatest results of the mentoring program is that communication has improved significantly in the field. Employees in Tiers 1, 2 and 3 no longer feel as though they are stuck on an island. Quite the contrary, they now know there are channels through which they can ask questions and get answers when they need them. With B&W’s team spread across the globe, this ability to effectively communicate is vital to performance at the project level. It also gives B&W’s leadership real knowledge on where training and focus across its many services lines are needed, thus ensuring world class performance to its customers. In an industry dominated by the use of individual contractors, B&W’s direct hired team provides a path to stable, consistent growth in knowledge and skills. And, the mentoring program gives new staff the roadmap to advancing through the company.
We have already seen the value this investment of knowledge gives to our employees. Mentors track growth in their employees by completing what is called a Competency Feedback Form—these keep a record of what skills the mentor relationship is fostering and forecasts the areas the employee can further sharpen. With this information in place we can spur our employees on to success, and they, in turn, will continue to uphold B&W’s exceptional reputation.
Co-Director of the B&W Mentorship Program, Billy Williams, explained the immense value tied to the program, “Our mentoring is creating such a richness and depth to our employees knowledge and ability, that we won’t need to look outside the company to fill positions in the future–I see a lot of in-company promotions for the future of B&W and continued accumulation of unmatched knowledge and expertise.”
“Better People”– we guarantee it, in our slogan and in our work. Yet, we know that excellence does not happen overnight. That is why we are dedicated to investing in our team members, continually adding value to our company, and setting the standard in our industry– the B&W Mentoring Program does just that, and that is why we are proud to boast the work our incredible team is doing.