When on the scheme, a lot of lovely people will offer you advice and if you’re anything like me you’ll lap it up! However, you definitely start to hear certain phrases crop up more than once such as: “the scheme is what you make of it”, “” and “you’re the future leaders”.
Now that I have less than 3 months left before my first placement is over and I move on to my flexi I’ve been thinking about the advice I was given and what I would say to the new intake starting in September. These were my thoughts; I’ll try and avoid cliché’s.
The biggest piece of advice I would have wanted before starting on the scheme is; you are not an amazing manager yet…. For some of us our first placements are our first full time jobs out of University, you can’t expect yourself to hit the ground running from day one. And that is fine! It can be easy to feel all of these expectations for your performance but allow yourself the time to learn from those around you.
On a similar theme, utilise other trainees from day one but try not to compare experiences. I can’t speak for others but for me, one of my biggest support systems is the trainees in my region, we share our issues and triumphs with each other and I can rely on them to be honest because we all want the best for one another. However, I have been known to panic because someone has more responsibility than me in their placement or they seem busier on a given day than me. I’ve come to the conclusion that this is pointless because each placement is so different and while you’re having a bad day someone will always be having a good day and vice versa.
My final piece of advice that I was definitely told but wish I had acted on more at the beginning is; say yes to opportunities that spark your interest. When I first started my placement I was worried about being out of the office too frequently, and there definitely is a balance, but I didn’t pursue a couple of days shadowing because I was worried that should have been done during my orientation. If something interests you, find out more about it in any way you can! That is the beauty of being on the scheme and you will get some truly amazing opportunities.
I look forward to meeting the new September intake, if anyone has any questions you can find me on Twitter @ESpottiswoode, I’d love to start chatting to people preparing for their placements.