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My Grad programme journey - Imogen Huxley, Graduate Management Trainee

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I have been with Compass now for 14 months. My background is retail and I applied for the Management Trainee Graduate Programme, because it would be able to give me experience in all areas of the business. It was a tough process to get onto the course, but I was so thrilled when I was offered the place.

The first part of my placement with Compass was working in within ESS defence, where I took on responsibilities such as coordinating the social media platforms at the base I worked at, carrying out audits in the different units and organising team events. During this time, I learnt a lot and developed my organisational, communication and leaderships skills. I also learnt a lot about the food industry and have seen it from a military perspective which is interesting and unique.

All the graduates rotate roles on this scheme and the second part of my training is in the Diversity & Inclusion Team (D&I), which I started in July 2020. In this role, I am helping to drive and amplify cultural diversity awareness, education, listen and to increase the D&I culture in Compass.

One of my biggest achievements in this role has been helping to form a cultural ethnicity network called Within. It’s made up of around 25 employees, cross sector and from different backgrounds. We meet frequently to discuss actions, plans and ideas in order to drive cultural awareness and impactful change. I feel we are making a real difference and it’s something I’m really proud to be part of.

Another project I led on was National Inclusion Week (NIW), which took place earlier this year and it was a great opportunity to combine our three D&I network groups - Pride in Food, Women in Food and Within to promote an agenda that all were working towards. I worked really hard to coordinate NIW content and communications and it was a great learning experience for me. I was able to use all the knowledge and skills from the graduate programme and apply it to something that had a massive impact with our colleagues.

In this short space of time, I have learnt a lot through being offered meaningful opportunities. I have formed relationships with internal stakeholders and external partners, I have played a big part in increasing the comms and awareness of D&I, as well as setting up initiatives that truly drive change.

I have got 10 months left of the course and I’m looking forward to developing further in this time. We are continuing to push the cultural diversity agenda, but also starting to focus on other areas within D&I. I look forward to utilising the knowledge I have and using it to make a difference to the company and people’s lives, as well as help my own personal and professional future.


Looking to learn more about life as a graduate with Compass Group? Search #compassgrads on LinkedIn.