Actuarial Mentoring Programme: the value of mentoring


Danni Kelman shares her experience of being mentored by the IFoA’s Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Mann, via the Actuarial Mentoring Programme

Since the Actuarial Mentoring Programme (AMP) launched in 2017, the IFoA has been supporting its mission to improve diversity within the actuarial profession.

This year we asked AMP participant Danni Kelman to share her experience of being mentored by the IFoA’s Chief Executive, Stephen Mann. You can also read about Stephen’s experience of mentoring Danni in his blog post.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself

My name is Danni Kelman and I have worked at XPS Pensions in Birmingham City Centre for the last six years.

Why did you join the AMP programme?

I joined the AMP programme as I had recently been promoted and am looking to qualify in the next year; I was looking for guidance on how best to navigate and pave my own career path. I also wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to talk to someone external, get their advice on how to deal with more complex situations, and learn from their individual experiences.

You were paired with Stephen Mann, CEO of the IFoA. What’s the most important thing you learnt from him?

The most important thing I have learnt from Stephen is that it really is OK to have self-doubts and that everyone, no matter who they are, has their own ‘gremlins’. It’s how you deal with them that is important, so that you can still climb and reach great heights.

What surprised you most about your mentoring relationship?

How genuinely easy it was to talk to Stephen. We would meet once a month but in those discussions I felt I had someone with whom I could discuss the matters that arose from month to month. I felt really comfortable and at ease in our discussions, and this enabled us to explore topics in a lot more detail than I had anticipated originally.

How has the programme impacted you professionally/personally so far?

Through the programme I have learnt how important it is to take the time to reflect on myself and my career, to acknowledge and develop both my strengths and weaknesses, using the techniques and lessons I have learnt throughout.

What would you say to anyone thinking of joining the programme?

Go for it! If you put the time and effort into it, you won’t regret it.

If you would like to hear how your organisation can be involved this year, please contact Moving Ahead: You can find out more about AMP on the Moving Ahead website.