The graduates on our 2020 Leaders programme write about their experiences as Sainsbury's graduates.
The fact that I’m writing this blog from the newly opened Tottenham Store highlights the range of exciting opportunities that are available on Sainsbury’s 2020 graduate scheme.
Most people don’t enjoy Mondays, but perhaps they need to experience a Monday as a graduate at Sainsbury’s. Monday 15th April has to be my favourite so far: Hannah Cockroft, Robbie Grabarz and Josie Pearson to my right, an excited group of journalists to my left. And in front of me was the stunning view of the Olympic Stadium, as Sainsbury’s was confirmed as the title sponsor of the Sainsbury’s Summer Series.
Being on the Sainsbury’s 2020 leaders programme is all about making the most out of each of your placements; building some brilliant relationships, meeting new people, being accountable for influential projects and decisions, selling your ideas to senior managers and invariably making mistakes along the way – but as I’ve found out it is how we learn from our experiences to become better leaders that’s most important!
Friday night I found myself stood in the entrance of Sainsbury’s Balham wearing a onesie selling red noses! Don’t worry, I haven’t been worked so hard that I’ve lost the plot; this was just another day in the life of a Sainsbury’s graduate!
It’s Wednesday and it’s my day off. So far the Sainsbury’s 2020 Scheme is living up to everything I thought it was going to be; not 9-5; not Monday to Friday and anything but monotonous. In this installment of the ‘Our Graduates’ blog I want to briefly take you through my first six months in retail and give you a snapshot of what the Operations Scheme will look like for the forthcoming year.
Making a positive difference to our community is a big part of life at Sainsbury's. Which is why we thought that we needed to do our bit to raise money for Red Nose Day this year. So what are we up to?
As the night draws in, I grab my bag, coat and car keys and wave goodbye to a sea of friendly faces. My new family. It’s a Saturday night and the end of my first week as a standalone Customer Services Manager. There have been no major catastrophes or complaints... I have survived. Cue big sigh of relief.
2012 has been a remarkable year by any measure. The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and the recent announcement of a royal baby have offered us all some much needed cheer in difficult times. In this Year Like No Other, Sainsbury’s has caught the mood of the nation and thrown itself into the festivities, and I’ve been lucky to play my part.
On the 2020 Graduate Programme, I did not expect to meet Ledley King, find out in detail how curries are made or serve 100 football fans breakfast on a Sunday morning, but this is all just a typical day as a graduate in the wonderful world of Sainsbury’s.
A mere four months have passed since I started as a fresh faced Graduate and today I find myself in the general office of Sainsbury’s Hendon. “How many trolleys do we need to order?” cries the voice of my Store Manager. “When do I get my holiday forms back?” demands another colleague. “Rob, we need you downstairs at the checkouts!” comes a voice over the phone that I have pressed to my ear... Sound chaotic? Not at all, this is just another day as a Sainsbury’s 2020 Graduate.
Firstly a bit about me; I joined the scheme in September, after graduating from Cambridge University in 2011 with a degree in Classics. I then worked in Recruitment Consultancy before going travelling for 6 months last year. I know many of my fellow graduate cohort have outlined their first few months with Sainsbury’s, so I won’t rehash all of that. But instead I will start about two weeks into my first placement in Head Office.
The Sainsbury’s Graduate scheme is anything but mundane. In just 3 months I have already experienced the daily life of working in a store, attended the Sainsbury’s annual conference with 5,000 other colleagues and helped open the largest new Sainsbury’s supermarket in London.
You may have heard of the Sainsbury’s 2020 graduate scheme; it's probably why you’re on this blog right now. However, not many people know about the Property Graduate Scheme and I thought it was important to give an insight into the other opportunities Sainsbury’s has to offer.
When I joined the company back in September, I was issued with my name badge and welcomed into the Sainsbury’s family. Eight months down the line and the 2020 Leaders Operations scheme has provided me with front-line experience which has developed my appreciation of how the business functions and the challenges it faces on a daily basis.
When people ask me how long I have worked at Sainsbury’s, it always shocks me when I answer ‘about 18 months now’ (and I think that even this is underselling it a bit – it’s probably more like almost 2 years!). So is it just a case of ‘time flies when you’re having fun?’
I’m Calum, Sainsbury’s first horticultural graduate, and I have spent the last five months working at our biggest floral supplier in the UK, with the last 6 weeks based at a leading flower breeder in Holland. I have introduced myself to many people since I started in September, and all reacted to my role with a mix of curiosity and confusion. Don’t worry, I will explain all.
Many of you will be reading this to gain insight into the 20x20 graduate scheme, however Sainsbury's also has an Own Brand graduate scheme which is very focused on the own brand products which make up around half of Sainsbury's food and grocery sales, and I am part of their placement scheme.
Unlike some of the other grad blogs you may have read, mine is based on the 2020 Commercial Placement, which is part of my year in Industry. I didn’t know what to expect from a placement at Sainsbury’s, so I hope that if you’re in the application process this will give you something of an insight!
I am one of the six Own Brand Graduates from the September 2013 intake. So, how did I get here?
The Property Division at Sainsbury’s is a hidden world, only those lucky enough to work here really understand the exciting and crucial role it plays in driving the business forward. You name it, we’re involved in it. Having had the privilege of being on the Property Graduate scheme for the last year, I wanted to give the outside world a glimpse of what we get up to.
Sainsbury’s property portfolio is vital to its business. Without it, there would be no stores to trade from, nowhere to hold goods awaiting distribution and no offices to coordinate these processes. But most people are at a loss as to what our Coventry-based Property Department actually does. Hopefully, I can shed some light on what goes on in our Midlands Store Support Centre!
I joined Sainsbury’s three years after I left university, as I really wanted to gain some work experience and go travelling. I’m so glad that I got to go and explore the world before getting stuck into my career, but by the time my first day came round I was definitely ready for a challenge.
To think that it has been a whole year since I joined the Sainsbury’s graduate scheme is a little scary! Oh how time flies when you are learning so much! So what have I been up to?