Here at Unilever we’re passionate about helping people find their purpose and harness their potential. Our Future Careers team is committed to helping 100,000 people along the path to a purposeful career by 2023. As part of this, Unilever partners with a number of organisations to provide summer placements, creating opportunities for young talent, providing invaluable work experience in an office-based environment and helping them to unlock their work confidence and potential.
This summer Unilever hosted 19 summer placements for UpReach, The Amos Bursary and Kings College London.
We asked Franklin Nnodi, who joined the Sustainable Business and Communications Team for four weeks from The Amos Bursary, about his experience spending his summer at Unilever UK and Ireland. Here is what he thought:
How did you apply for the opportunity for work experience at Unilever?
I was recommended for the internship by a senior member of the scholarship programme at The Amos Bursary. I applied internally within The Amos Bursary and after having my CV reviewed, I was chosen to represent the Amos Bursary on a four-week placement.
What did you like best about working at Unilever?
I would say that one of the best things about working at Unilever is the atmosphere of trust and support within the company and especially within my department, the Sustainable Business & Communications team. I was able to work in different parts of the building, work outside and even work from home. I also really liked how the open plan office allows free flow of conversations.
Lastly, I really admired how Unilever are always thinking about their employees and how they can make the working space more agile and comfortable. During my time there they were introducing things such as summer hours and designing a new terrace space which highlights how employee focused the company is.
What was your best learning and proudest achievement from your time at Unilever?
One thing that I’ve taken away from my experience at Unilever is the helpful and honest feedback I received from my team. Learning how to improve as a colleague and engage more effectively is one of the main learnings which I will implement in my future career.
My proudest achievement was delivering a ten-minute presentation to the whole Communications team in the presence of the team director and senior managers. I had just under a week to complete my research and practice the presentation whilst juggling other tasks that were important. Working on an important presentation whilst maintaining the same high-quality level of work tested my time management and organisational skills.
What surprised you most when you started?
What surprised me the most was how right from the beginning I was given tasks that were important for the team. I felt I was making real contributions every day. I was really surprised by the team’s willingness to provide frequent feedback during the day via email, Skype, and meetings.
The entire team was invested in ensuring I improved and impressed employees with my work. This made me feel well looked after and motivated to come in each day. Despite the size of the office, I always felt welcomed and part of the team. Also, the free Ben & Jerry’s every day came as a very big surprise.
In three words how was your experience at Unilever?
Enlightening, educational and immersive.
If you were stuck on an island, what one Unilever product would you bring and why?
If I was stuck on an island all alone, I would bring a lifetime supply of Lipton Iced Tea. Since starting at Unilever as an intern I’ve experimented with almost every flavour with my lunches and I still can’t say I have a definitive favourite. I love refreshing drinks and I’ve always found myself satisfying any discomfort, stress or thirst with a chilled bottle of Lipton’s Iced Tea.
Interested in learning more about the opportunities available at Unilever? Go to our careers section www.unilever.co.uk/careers/ to learn about all of the opportunities available and follow our careers team on www.facebook.com/UnileverCareersUK.