Degree and university: Public relations and communications, 1st, University of Lincoln
Job title: Marketing manager, Tesco
Why did you want to work for Tesco?
It came from two things: firstly I wanted to work for a big, national company. It had to be big for the reason that I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, so working for a big company meant I could move into other areas. Second, I chose Tesco because I’d worked on the shop floor at Marks and Spencer, and knew I liked retail. Wanting to work for a big retail organisation led me to Tesco.
What do you do in your job?
I joined Tesco in 2003 and undertook the 18-month graduate scheme. Now, I’m completing a 12-month placement. I project manage around nine marketing teams and make sure they link up. They have different aims and it’s difficult to get them to join up. I am working on two projects: one is sports for schools, and the other is health.
What do you like most about your job?
My role is interesting because I work with loads of different departments. I don’t physically produce anything, but I touch on lots of areas. For example I work with Tesco Magazine, as well as new products. I get to move outside marketing every so often and learn about things like commercial affairs, which helps me get more experience. One of the best things is the chop and change; in other companies if you get itchy feet you have to look for another job externally.
What is the most challenging aspect of the job?
I’m very clear about what I need to do, but my work involves lots of people – and making sure everyone is joined up is a challenge. For example, Tesco Magazine knows three months in advance what it is going to feature, but with point of sale we’re lucky if they decide four weeks before – they have really different time scales.
I am going to work in an advertising team. So I will have gone from having quite a general role to choosing a specific discipline. I don’t really know anything about the role yet!
Advice for readers considering a career in marketing?
I’ve really learnt that so many skills are applicable to marketing. When I look around the office I see people who are extremely analytical, while others are really creative. You have to be open-minded about your skills and where they fit in best.