I am delighted to welcome and introduce our fourth Diverse Minds’ associate Monica Mwanje. Monica is a Chartered Chemical Engineer, who through her own experience of often being the only Black, and at times female professional, in the nuclear sector was drawn to diversity and inclusion work.
Monica Mwanje is the Founder and Managing Director of MM Creative Solutions and a Chartered Chemical Engineer, who provides strategic consultancy services for organisations seeking growth and transformation. With a focus in the nuclear and other regulated sectors. She has successfully worked with organisations of all sizes, from microbusiness through to multinationals. Monica has delivered inclusion training, consultancy and guidance on group and one-to-one basis. To date, inclusion services have been delivered to clients based in: USA, Canada, Europe and UK. Monica is often a speaker and panellist at international conferences/events, speaking to attendees drawn from all continents about inclusion and diversity.
What drew Monica to inclusion and diversity work, was reflecting on her own career journey in the nuclear sector, where she has often been the only Black professional in the meeting rooms (or conference halls), and at times the only woman too. Speaking with new entrants over the years in the nuclear sector, Monica realised that a number of the barriers she faced at the start of her career, still ring true and that progress on some aspects has been varied and limited at best.
Areas of Monica’s expertise
Inclusion, diversity, equity and equality. Working with multi-disciplined technical teams and advising leadership teams on how to develop and implement meaningful strategies.
What’s one fact about yourself you would like to share?
I love going to live music events!
What inspired you to join Diverse Minds as an Associate in 2021?
Leyla’s work, experience and knowledge was a huge draw. I’m a huge fan of her work (and her podcast). I couldn’t pass up on this opportunity to collaborate with Leyla and to further develop my skills and understanding. Leyla has created some great workshops and trainings and being able to amplify these messages and support Leyla’s work and help connect people with this fantastic content and materials is something I am keen to do. (Do check out Episode #40 where Monica was a guest with Michelle Gyimah talking about Negotiating Something Better)
What is the one book that has greatly impacted what you do and why?
‘Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway’ By Susan Jeffers, it has practical tips that help me to take action in the moments I need to. It also helped me understand more about human behaviour and how to overcome or work through particular situations.
How has not getting what you want immediately helped you to reach your career goals?
It reinforced my determination and resilience. In addition, it helped me carve out my own path and to innovate to overcome challenges.
What are your top three tips for looking after your mental health and wellbeing?
1. Spending time doing an activity that works for me and that helps me to meditate. For me, my meditation practice is going for a walk.
2. Setting boundaries and remembering that other people’s behaviour is often a reflection of them and not of me.
3. Implementing systems and tools that help make my life easier and reduce stress. For example, I have a journal that helps me think about and shape my goals in a way that’s achievable for me.
We are over the moon to have Monica as part of the Diverse Minds Team and we look forward to you meeting her and the rest of the wider team. You can find more information about Diverse Minds Associates here.