I always thought I'd end up in a design office doing what a chemical engineer usually does so this is completely different to what I thought I was going to do with my career. But it's fun and I really do enjoy being on the operations side of things. Managing a factory is a lot of fun.
The scheme lasts for 2.5 years and every six months you get assessed in engineering, business, finance, and safety and the environmental aspects of the business. After that you come out and hopefully get appointed as a factory team leader and work your way up to become operations manager for one of the factories at British Sugar.
I didn't really know what to expect until I got here, but once I was here and once I found out exactly what I was going to do, I really did start to enjoy it then. When you start a job you need to get straight into it - just jump in the deep end and get stuck in.
A typical day for me could be darting all over - I never just stay in one place and no two days are ever the same. You're always going from one end of the factory to the other non-stop for eight hours, so it's good exercise as well.
I think it's important that you do work shifts because you get to see what's going on at night time and it gives you a chance if you're the only team leader on site, or the only manager on site, it's up to you to deal with the problem and get it sorted for the morning. So it's good to do it.
It's important to have a good team behind you especially with all the specialist equipment on site so at three o’clock in the morning when you've got a breakdown, it's making sure you have people that you know and can talk to so that they can support you and get you back up and running again.
Probably my biggest achievement is being appointed factory team leader here. It's quite a demanding job especially when you've got your learning targets as well as running a shift at the same time.