Anna Jakielaszek has always been interested in understanding what makes people tick. So much so, she founded her company See Be Mean, an organisation that provides training and consultancy related to diversity, inclusion and leadership development.
Anna became interested in being a ‘participant observer’ while studying her Masters in Sociology - this involves really understanding what’s going on in the environment around us and interpreting how people interact. Having this deep understanding of how people think and make decisions has motivated Anna to become a mentor on the March8 Mentorship Programme.
The name ‘See Be Mean’ was derived from Anna’s belief that each word is an individual component that can help create better workplaces. Anna explains: “Firstly, we need to ‘see’ people and be that silent observer, to really understand what's going on around us. Secondly we need to ‘be’ our authentic selves and create environments where we can show up, express ourselves and be listened to.
“Finally, ‘mean’ is not only about bringing meaning to our lives and workplaces, but working towards our strengths to enrich our own experiences. These elements allow me to help others to reach their dreams and ambitions, while also becoming more aware. Ultimately, these can create completely new values.”
Through See Be Mean, Anna is able to interact with many different people from across the globe, to help them reach their ‘a-ha’ moment when they start to become more self aware. By working closely with others, she is able to help change the behaviours and attitudes and create completely new values and meaning.
“We have cultural differences for sure, but we’re all human and there are things that unite us. So [See Be Mean] is very empowering and inspiring,” says Anna.
Two years ago, Anna was diagnosed with ADHD, which she describes as her ‘penny drop’ moment. She says: “I was able to accept and understand myself even better. I worked out some strategies before even knowing what it [ADHD] was, which eventually contributed to a successful outcome. Now, my ADHD has become my biggest weakness, but my biggest strength, too.”
Becoming a mentor for the March8 Mentorship Programme will enable Anna to share her experiences and knowledge with others. She says: “I appreciate the people I met on my own professional development path. There were those who saw some potential in me and gave me a chance against all odds. They were role models of what could be possible, or that asked the right questions and gave encouragement when was most needed. I’d like to be able to do the same,” says Anna.
“It is astonishing to me the more I realise how much untapped potential organisations have among their employees. The possibility of becoming a mentor made me excited about this opportunity to give back and help others see and appreciate the value they already have.”
Click here to find out more about See Be Mean.