Tell us who you are!
I’m Scott Nelson, a well-traveled technical trainer and project manager. I love teaching, travel, motorcycling, and working hands-on with technology.
Tell us more about your career steps and other projects you were part of!
[This is best answered by my LinkedIn profile, and my life story in my master’s thesis paper]
What does “Social Capital” mean to you?
Social Capital means having friends who will share their perspectives on my situation, and seek my advice on theirs. It means making impressions which open doors, and leaving situations better than I found them. It means being known as a valuable contact and team player.
What makes you successful in life/current job?
My experience and technical capabilities are important, but I think my listening skills are more important, and my desire to make professional and personal situations better than I found them.
What is/has been your biggest achievement professionally and personally?
Professionally, my biggest accomplishment is parlaying a BA in Studio Arts, military electronics training, adult education experience via the Motorcycle Safety Foundation, and a two-year certificate in automotive service into a 15-year career in high-technology training.
Personally, I think my greatest accomplishment is helping other people to invest in themselves through knowledge and skill building, and practicing introspection to reinvent myself as needed. That’s a tough process!
What skills, experiences or incidences helped you to get you to where you are today? What hindered?
My travel experiences and working with all kinds of people have really broadened my thinking. I discovered my love of teaching when I began teaching motorcycle safety back in college, and since have made it my preferred full-time profession in other contexts. While doing so, I began mentoring my teaching colleagues and sharing what has worked (and not!) for me.
I’ve been hindered by management that pigeonholed me in one role and didn’t work to develop my skillset, partly my own doing for allowing it. There are other times I’ve hindered my own learning by over-analyzing decisions instead of jumping in and learning from it.
What are your aspirations as a 1World Mentor for the 1World Social Capital Program?
When I teach, I learn what others think and clarify my own ideas. I am interested in making mentoring a bigger part of my personal brand.
What can you offer your 1World Mentee?
I begin by listening. What does my mentee want? This can be probed by asking the right questions. Personal and professional history, aspirations, interests, capabilities and current context all help in coaching a mentee, using relevant stories of my own experiences.
What does your ideal 1World Mentee look like?
The most important trait of a mentee to me is initiative. Mentoring is much like interactive teaching. I would rather have a student or mentee be confidently wrong than unsure they’re right. Confidence leads to action, which leads to learning.
What are your aspirations for your 1World Mentee?
I would like my mentee to better understand her own background and aspirations, be able to clearly explain them, and then build a path toward the life she wants for herself and the people she chooses to keep in her life.
Do you believe there is a glass ceiling for young female professionals? If yes, how can we break it?
I believe there is a glass ceiling of sorts for female professionals. Historically I think this evolves from women’s biological role in carrying on humanity, and perhaps less reckless confidence than sometimes comes from more testosterone. However, I know several women who are the primary wage earners in their households while husbands parent the kids. I value the perspective that women bring to the workplace, and as I mentioned in my video diversity sometimes needs a push to overcome the status quo.