Joined: September 2010
My story: Four things stood out for me about the Stagecoach graduate scheme - the variety, the opportunity for early responsibility, the exposure to industry leaders from day one, and the chance to move from one location to another and gain many varying experiences. The training was clearly defined and the idea of working in busy and unpredictable environments really appealed to me.
In my first year I was immersed in the business from top to bottom - one day spent working under buses in the engineering department, the next meeting with the directors of the local operating company. It really was that varied. I learned to drive a bus in service, met customers and got to grips with depot control and its managerial functions. This hands-on experience, combined with various training courses throughout the year, gave me a solid start.
In my second year I was appointed Assistant Operations Manager at our Stockton depot. This meant I shared responsibility for managing 156 drivers and 80 vehicles. My main responsibility was to recruit and develop staff, and focus on high standards of service delivery. A lot of my time was spent responding to customer feedback, and managing drivers and control office staff. I also attended meetings with local stakeholders and local authority partners.
This second year led to various Operations Managers roles in the Midlands and culminated in a General Managers role at our megabus.com operation based in Milan. I certainly never saw my career with Stagecoach taking me to working in Italy for 2 years!
I am currently Operations Director at Scottish Citylink Coaches based in Glasgow and although I have now reached a Director’s position, the coaching and mentoring has not stopped, there is still a focus on professional and personal development. Certainly the culture here encourages people to voice their opinions – I certainly believe that the experiences earlier in my career through the Stagecoach graduate scheme gave me the strong foundations to build on and have helped me progress to my current position. The responsibility, variety and challenge is certainly something I have thrived upon.