Hotel Café Royal was the backdrop for the graduation of Fast Forward 15′s 2016 intake. Founded by Fay Sharpe of Zibrant LIVE! and Vice President Marketing BCD M&E, Fast Forward 15 has been conceived to develop and empower future female talent in the hospitality sector.

The graduation lunch brought together industry figureheads to see the mentees share the impact of being mentored through achievements made in their personal and professional lives. The 15 mentees had received structured development including presentation techniques, goal setting and help defining their own personal brand, as well as being collectively tasked with a charity fundraising challenge.

Mentee; Penny Law from Informa highlighted her accomplishments as: “Starting a new job at a FTSE 100 company as principal operations director with the role continually evolving to be more strategic and commercially focused.”

Fellow mentee Jenny Mclaren from NAHT underlined her personal gains of: “Increased confidence and responsibility and taking an instrumental lead in the roll-out and embedding of the company’s first digital delegate registration system” as the highpoint of her mentorship.

Commenting on their successes, Fay Sharpe added: “I am delighted for every single person who stood in front of their peers to share how they met their goals over the year. It’s extremely exciting to see the mentees proud, confident and commanding an audience. This is exactly what the programme is designed for and I can’t wait to help nurture next year’s mentees.”

Mentees were selected after a rigorous interview process and drawn from corporates, agencies and suppliers.

The Fast Forward 15 mentoring programme is a not for profit initiative spanning across the hospitality industry, giving access to, and insight from some of the leaders who shape the sector. For more information on the 2017 programme, please visit www.fastforward15.co.uk/