We recently caught up with Emma Bennet-Morris on her experiences after recently joining the BMW Group. Emma joined BMW in April 2018 on the Global Leader Development Programme, after graduating from the University of Bath with a degree in International Management and Modern Languages (Spanish). After five months working in the sales department at the BMW UK headquarters, she has recently moved to Munich, Germany to start the next three month rotation working at the BMW Global headquarters.
WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE LIKE WITH APPLYING TO THE BMW GLOBAL LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME?
The application process for the BMW Graduate Programme was comprehensive, consisting of an initial resume upload, various online aptitude tests including verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, diagrammatical reasoning, a telephone interview with a member of the HR team, and finally an assessment centre over the course of 2 days which included further aptitude tests, a case study presentation, a role-play, team exercises and more interviews!
WHAT FIRST ATTRACTED YOU TO THE BMW GLOBAL LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME.
The opportunity to travel within a global company whilst working in 4 different departments really appealed to me. Working across different cultures is both exciting and insightful, and I believe that through working in a few different departments, I will be able to get a better holistic view of the organisation which will undoubtedly help me in my future at BMW.
HOW HAVE YOU FOUND YOUR FIRST 5 MONTHS WORKING FOR THE BMW UK GROUP?
My first 5 months in Sales Planning have absolutely flown by and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time working for BMW. I was part of the Sales Planning team who look after the forecasting, ordering, production and allocation of cars. I found this rotation incredibly helpful as I developed a thorough understanding of how an order is created, the different channels through which BMW sells its cars, and the various stages that a car goes through before arriving at the end user. I was warmly welcomed into the team and my colleagues were incredibly supportive and friendly which made my time at BMW UK very enjoyable. I was also given responsibility early on and was set a challenging project which kept me very busy and enabled me to build connections across the wider Sales and Product teams.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO WITH YOUR MOVE TO MUNICH?
I am really looking forward to the challenge of working and living in Germany. The working culture is very different to that of the UK and I am excited to explore Munich and do some travelling, as well as meeting and spending time with Germans and the other individuals on the Global Leadership Development programme from across the world. During my three months in Munch, I will be working in the Product Management team, before returning to the UK to join the Strategy team.
WHAT DO YOU EXPECT TO BE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE?
I think one of the biggest challenges of moving to Munich is the culture and language barrier. Having grown up across 4 different countries, I would say that I am more prepared for this move than perhaps someone who has never ventured outside of the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, moving to a different country with different processes and systems and a different working culture is still very daunting!
WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO GAIN FROM THE BMW GLOBAL LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME OVER THE NEXT 18 MONTHS?
I think that the programme at BMW is a fantastic opportunity to really get stuck into the organisation and learn as much as possible in a short space of time. I want to be able to contribute and be a valuable asset to the different teams I join across the programme, and I hope to graduate from the programme with a good foundation of knowledge about the company and the brand as well as a good network and reputation which will help me kick-start my career at BMW.