Group 48 Trainee Shahrukh is halfway through his MDS journey and is entering his third secondment. Changing over between secondments can seem daunting at first but here’s Shah’s top advice on how to rise to the challenge!
What was your previous secondment and what did you learn?
My last secondment was with A H Worth, where I was able to experience a Project Coordinator role. This secondment was a challenging role as I had never experienced working in a high-pressure factory environment. I was blown away by how our produce is manufactured on such a large scale for the big supermarkets. I developed my resilience and can-do approach, allowing me to speak to a range of management levels and work cross-functionally with different departments on multiple projects.
Food and fresh produce is fast-paced, and I have had to adapt to match the industry’s speed, delivery, and demand. It has been challenging, but I have always tried to maintain a positive mindset. I think this is the biggest driver for any Trainee when it comes to the more challenging moments.
Where is your next secondment?
My next secondment is at Fyffes as a Line Supervisor in Coventry which is a hands-on role. I will be responsible for ensuring products meets specification, and that all food safety objectives are attained. I’m ready to get stuck in and get the most out of this secondment. I am looking forward to gaining experience in managing people within the role of a line supervisor, and I am excited to hone my time management skills by working towards targets and tight deadlines.
What are your tips for starting a new secondment in a new location?
What really helped me during the changeover period was reaching out to other Trainees and getting their views on the role and company. I find that this usually gives you a more honest breakdown of any questions or worries you may have and offers you an empathetic perspective. Trainees also give you recommendations of where to stay and things to do outside of work to ensure you can enjoy your downtime. This included finding food and restaurants, gyms and shopping centres. It’s fantastic being able to experience and discover a new place!
Changeover can be quite daunting, but building your time management skills can make it a lot easier. Ensure you give yourself enough time to plan the whole period of moving from one secondment to another. This includes finding accommodation, organising an introduction call with your secondment manager/team, packing and planning your route. Always remember, the MDS team are here to support you as well as other Trainees. Before you know it, you are in the role, and the next changeover has come around again!
Are you up for the challenge?
You don’t need to have experience in food to kick-start your career in fresh produce. MDS are looking for hard-working, can-do Trainees with a passion for supporting the industry. Do you think you might be up for the challenge? Sign up for our virtual graduate open day to take part in two free CV boosting management workshops and receive a certificate upon completion to show potential employers. Standout candidates will even have the opportunity to fast-track through our recruitment process! Sign up now via this LINK.