Tommy Crowe, from St. John Fisher Catholic Voluntary Academy in West Yorkshire, completed a 2-week Virtual Work Experience placement with Pladis Global. Here, he tells us how this new experience gave him skills, confidence and knowledge for the future.

Over 2 weeks I worked with around 20 other young people to complete a Virtual Work Experience placement at Pladis Global snack foods company. We were split into teams, given a project and challenged with presenting our findings to a panel of Pladis judges at the end of the placement. In between planning for our presentation, we also attended career insight sessions where we heard from other Pladis colleagues about their education and employment experiences. We also heard learnt a lot about Marketing and the FMCG industry.

Working with a group of people I hadn’t met before was a big challenge and really pushed me out of my comfort zone. We delegated tasks between us and decided who would work on which slides of the presentation. Working to a deadline was extremely motivating and the support of my team and the Pladis staff were very encouraging. The whole process developed my communication and team working skills.

I found working online challenging to begin with, I had to get used to the structure of the sessions. However, I found very quickly that completing work online suited me, I enjoyed the flexibility of being able to manage my own time and pick up the presentation project whenever I liked throughout the day. After a few days working online I felt quite confident with the process.

One of the main things I learnt from this experience was my own ability to adapt to change. Whilst I was nervous and unsure at the start of the placement, I settled in and adapted much faster than I ever would have expected. The support I had from the Pladis staff and other young people certainly contributed to this and I am proud of how much my confidence and self-esteem grew over the two weeks, despite this being something completely new to me.

This placement definitely helped me think about what I want to do after 6th form. Before this experience I was very uncertain about my choices, but I enjoyed this experience so much, that I want to go on to study Business at university and continue into a career related to this area. I really enjoyed my time with Pladis.

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