Not Your Ordinary consultant - He enjoys helping youths achieve their career goals
In our second installment of Career Guide feature, we interviewed Danni Jay, a Management Consultant.
Danni is not your ordinary mentor. As a Management Consultant, he naturally loves to solve problems. He wants to help people achieve their goals. And so apart from offering typical advice in terms of career, he provides suggestions based on his experiences and personality, values, and goals. Thus, making his proposed career strategies more relevant and more applicable to an individual rather than just centered on a type of job or role. He does this by ensuring that he understands his mentees on a deeper level.
He is also a passionate learner and wants to discover things on his own terms. Surprisingly during the lockdown, he re-created a few well-known recipes like Apple Tare Tatin (which he used Pineapples instead of Apples) and his version of Japanese King Prawns marinated with Tobiko, Soya and Ponzu sauce grilled on the Hibachi. Plus, he learned how to make his own bread too. That’s something you will seldom hear from a true-blue professional handling different businesses and managing various clients.
He is not afraid to share a piece of his personal life. It’s the same thing he wants his mentees to understand and to embrace as well when they kick-start their careers. He loves the idea that he could share his learnings and career advice to the younger generation.
During our interview, he shared some of his success stories and his words of wisdom that could help the youths today who are looking for the right job.
Check out some of our key takeaways.
Danni has an unconventional way of mentoring the youths. Most of the time, he holds informal sessions where he aims to understand his mentees on a personal level first before providing his advice on their career goals and aspirations. He believes that work and personal life are equally important. In order to provide the best career tips and advice, he has to understand their personal goals and individual objectives.
One of his success stories involved a mentee whom he provided tips on how to optimise his CV and LinkedIn profile. The mentee took his advice and received several invitations for job interviews. Previously, for about a year this mentee had difficulties in getting calls for interviews.
Another milestone that he accomplished as a mentor, was the time when he supported a newly hired mentee who made it to one of the Big 4 consulting firms. With Danni’s insights and guidance, she was better equipped with knowledge to navigate her way in the organisation. With that success story, her sister also reached out to Danni for help; and she landed an internship with a consulting firm.
What to consider when looking for a job
Most of the time, mentees will ask about the things they need to include in their CVs, or what it’s like to be a Management Consultant. They are very interested to know what the job entails, how to land a job interview, or how to navigate once they are in the workforce. While these are all valid and could help you in your career, Danni wanted to remind mentees that honesty plays a huge role. You have to be honest with yourself and find a job that you love and enjoy doing.
In addition, when creating your CV, Danni believes, you only have to include the best experiences relevant to the job role. You do not need to include everything you’ve experienced in your lifetime. As for the interview, avoid beating around the bush and do not be afraid to say no or I don’t know when asked a question that you cannot or don’t know how to answer. Be honest in saying that you don’t know the answer. Once again, your honesty will have its own rewards in due course.
Embracing mistakes and learning from it
Lastly, do not be afraid to ask questions. Be brave enough to try out things you’ve never done before and experience as many things as possible – not everyone stays in that same job for all their working life. Remember, mistakes will always happen, and that’s okay, get up and keep forging on. He shares that work, like life, is an adventure and experience that pays.
What Danni learned from his mentees
Danni enjoyed all the connections he had with the amazing mentees from Young NTUC. For him, making the first step to connect with a mentor means they have the passion, drive, and will to learn. He truly admired the passion and grit they had in them.
For him, one thing that is common among these mentees is that they go the extra mile, and they commit themselves to go for what they want and they keep asking questions. Walking with them through their journeys and understanding their personal experiences have helped Danni become a better person too, and this made him want to support them and other potential mentees even more.
What does his mentees say?
Sarah says: I’m immensely grateful to young NTUC’s LIT mentorship programme for bringing me in touch with Danni. Over recounts of his past experiences (with many laughs), Danni’s mentorship has given me so many invaluable insights about the life of a management consultant.
Stephanie says: The mentorship programme offered by Young NTUC’s LIT was a great way for me to meet working professionals and for me to clarify questions I have on a more personal level. Danni's advice has been really insightful, and I am very glad to have heard about this programme!
Janessa says: Danni’s guidance helped me to have a clearer view on my career aspirations while developing me personally. His insights were relevant, relatable and reflective. Thankful to have met him through this platform!
Danni with his mentees
Advice for the Youth
Never give up!
Remember, out of the 100 applications, all you need is 1 to say YES. Being realistic, Danni shared that dreams are not easy to achieve. And that means, be open to learning from anyone, understanding that failure never means the end. Always ask questions if you don’t know something and you will be amazed that there are many people who are generous enough to share their experiences and knowledge with you to fill that knowledge gap.