Emma’s Blog – 1 year at MDS
Group 47 Trainee, Emma has been on the MDS graduate scheme for over a year. She is currently seconded at fruit and veg supplier Greencell, in a commercial role. To celebrate 1-year on the MDS graduate scheme, and reaching the halfway point, Emma reflected on her experience so far.
What I have learned on MDS so far
Before starting MDS, I had no prior knowledge of the agricultural and food sector. This meant that in my first role I had to learn whilst on the job which although challenging, pushed me out of my comfort zone. My knowledge has since increased significantly. I have had the opportunity to work both in both an agricultural and food role. Both secondments have benefitted me greatly in my overall understanding of the sector. I have been given the opportunity to work within roles that I wouldn’t have considered outside of the MDS Scheme, or that I may not have been fully qualified for. I have learnt so much more than I anticipated, and I now have a completely new outlook on where I want my career to be headed.
My MDS Secondments
I worked in a Digital Marketing role within my first secondment. I was responsible for the Syngenta UK digital platforms. Within this, I was able to help develop the Syngenta Newsletter and the Podcast that was being produced at the time. Alongside this, I got to see first-hand the development of apps for the agricultural sector which is really interesting to see how quickly farming is progressing.
My current secondment is a 12-month placement working as an Assistant within the Retail Team looking after several of the core Accounts. I assist with the administration of the Accounts including forecasts, shortages, invoicing, amending / creating orders and retail auditing. Working alongside the Account Managers, I have also gained exposure in maintaining a relationships with customers, developing product portfolios and pursuing new opportunities to push the business forward.
Within my Digital Marketing role I led a Harvest Heroes campaign. The campaign gave me the opportunity to thank those who work within the agricultural sector for their hard work, particularly during the Harvest Period. I was able to work alongside charities, host competitions, share the work and content that farmers were producing across Social Media and create content for Syngenta with the help of our Technical Teams.
Within my Retail Assistant role, I was able to help develop the process for delivering products into Europe post Brexit for a core customer. I had to ensure that we were completely prepared for the transition.
I’m currently looking into establishing relationships with new customers that we haven’t worked with before. I have been given this opportunity to lead the project alone. This has seen me explore new leads and gain exposure in something that is unusual in an early career. I am currently working on this and am excited to see where I can take it.
The year ahead
Overall, I am looking forward to progressing my personal development and learning even more. Development is what MDS has really been about for me. I’m looking forward to restrictions easing and being able to work within an office and establish proper relationships with my current colleagues. I hope learn more about the other departments I work alongside, who from home I don’t get to work alongside.
I am also looking forward to finally meeting the individuals I work alongside with in MDS – Group 47. I’m looking forward to face-to-face events and training which I think will really boost my communication and confidence.