Interview with Anton Fishman on Mentoring with the Emerging Occ Psychs Initiative

By Amanda Lopes Pacca

The interview with the HR & Talent Tech Start-up Advisor, AI Educator, & Organisational Consultant Anton Fishman went beyond the expected limits – it was an enriching dialogue for future mentors and mentees who want to participate in the mentoring program developed by team. 

With honesty and good humor, Anton Fishman brought an experienced and wise look at the process of being a mentor, especially with his experience with two mentees in the first year of the programme. Several points were emphasized, the positive and negative aspects, proposals for improvement, interpersonal relationships, personal and professional gains, and even advice for those interested in participating in the program, either as mentors or mentees. 

So … read the post until the end to find out if the programme fits you and why applying to it could benefit your career. 

Anton’s blending approach of moments acting as a coach and others as a mentor was a favorable mix. Through his coaching experience of over 30 years, Anton showed that although he is comfortable and prepared to perform this role, it is always very satisfying and enjoyable to be with new and diverse people. When I questioned him about what he could take away from the programme, he reported that he could say it was remembering the pleasure that is to exercise the activity of mentoring.

We know that we can learn in various ways in life, and we often consider that learning means gaining something new, which has never been acquired before, be it knowledge, experience, etc. We can say that Anton showed us in this case that learning goes beyond the new because in daily life and in the activities that one already has practice, it is possible to continue with the pleasure and the learning process. In the old, new looks and perceptions about the same situations can always arise. It is like reading classicals, in different moments of our lives we can always read them again and have new perceptions. 

In Anton’s case, the remembrance of the pleasure of the practice and the choice for a life was present in this process. It is the practice allied to a continuous process that can provide varied emotions even through the same activities. The beauty of life is really in this, in finding reasons and purpose in our choices. Feeling, as Anton said, that he has something of value to say, especially with the younger generation, was relevant together with the fact of feeling useful. I believe this is something every human being desires, being useful on what they do or to others. 

The world’s beauty is not in statements of right and wrong but in the conscious exchange between individuals and generations and the development opportunities that can arise from this process. 

Anton also reflected on the importance of knowing when to give advice that is propitious for certain situations, and when not, something that can only be learned through the practice of the profession and with the famous dose of daily effort. The awareness needed to know the right moment to act is something he brought to the reflection for the future mentors of the programme. 

Professionals will develop these insights, awareness, and the sensitivity of acting in the field over time. And our mentoring programme can help you with the development of some competencies.

Finally, Anton also left us with a challenge, the knowing process of integrating theory with the real world. Famous in the academic world, the scientist-practitioner model debate is present. The theory is essential, but knowing how to integrate it into practice becomes central to the sustainable development of society and the resolution of its problems and limitations. As Anton said, making the transition from knowledge and insight to knowledge application into working practices. 

He leaves these challenges for readers to reflect, think, and try to find ways to apply this complex action in their professional and real lives. I don’t know how you readers felt reading about the interview so far, but for me it was like a little taste of the mentoring sessions, and great reflections that can come out of it.

About the advice for mentors and mentees, Anton, in his own words, leaves the following message:

“If you want to be a mentor, commit to that, do it, because it is professionally rewarding, it’s about empowering and helping to establish the next generations of applied psychology.”

We created better conditions to think and develop ourselves also in contact with people and through having different experiences. Suppose you are interested in applying to be a mentor and mentee. In that case, I wish you a fantastic journey and a path that can provide you with learning, a solid and aggregating network of relationships. 

Note: The team would like to thank Anton Fishman for his interview and participating as a mentor in the first year of the Occ mentoring programme. The interview is available on the youtube channel of the Psychology at Work team. The links are below if you would like to join the programme as a mentor, a mentee, or watch the interview. 

Link to apply to be a mentor:

Link to apply to be a mentee:

Link of the youtube interview:

About the Author

Amanda is a final year student of the WOP-P Master in Work, Organizational and Personnel Psychology. Brazilian by birth, her journey into psychology began before she graduated, at the age of 17, when she came into contact with Psychoanalysis. From then on, her passion for understanding the human mind expanded, and she graduated in Psychological Sciences at the University of Coimbra in Portugal. In her last year to become an occupational psychologist, her topics of interest cross all human nature, including leadership, psychological empowerment, emotional health, and mental problems. Her hope of contributing to the blog is that this vast universe of psychology could be accessible to as many people as possible through writing. Psychology has a long past but a short history. In this sense, psychology professionals owe it to the world of psychology and its precious knowledge to expand that so more people can think better about themselves, the world, and their desires.