"My mentor's support has been instrumental in pushing me to grasp every opportunity available to me..."

Lauren Crawford - Project Manager

Tell us about yourself Lauren

I have a Masters in Chemistry from Durham University, and have previously worked in pharmaceutical research and development and sports management. I joined James Fisher and Sons in September 2018 and after touring the group companies, I started my first placement in business development with James Fisher Marine Services. I've since started my second placement in resource management with James Fisher Nuclear.

What attracted you to James Fisher and Sons?

I found out about the Future Leadership Programme with James Fisher and Sons through a graduate program recruitment update from an agency. Immediately I recognised the name as my family has a history in shipping and as I read more about what the company has branched into from their maritime roots, I became more and more interested.

The programme allowed me to not only work in different departments within a company, but also to gain experience in multiple industries and working in different locations - an opportunity I felt I couldn't pass up. The exposure to different industries as well as all the different companies interested me greatly. Plus, learning more about the projects James Fisher was working on around the world made up my mind that this was a company I wanted to be part of.

What's a typical day like for you?

Already my 'typical' day doesn't really exist. My experience so far has allowed me to get involved in many different projects, tasks and assignments. With James Fisher Marine Services, I was part of the design and implementation of a new Client Relationship Management System, while also rolling out training sessions and guidance on the new Tender Approval Process the company had recently implemented. This meant a typical day could involve checking in with the bids team to make sure they were following the correct process and providing support with that, updating the CRM system with new information or generating reports on business forecasting to be presented to senior leadership.

How would you describe the training and mentoring you have received so far?

Both James Fisher Marine Services and James Fisher Nuclear provided me with a full induction into their company and introduction into the industries they work within. The projects I have been assigned have challenged me and pushed me out of my comfort zone, but the on-the-job support I receive means I'm never completely out of my depth. Ongoing leadership training comes in formal workshops and courses, as well as being provided situations in my day-to-day role that allow me to grow these skills. Having an assigned mentor has been extremely beneficial as this is someone who is helping to guide my full career development and challenging me to start work now on the skills I am going to need for the roles I want in the future. My mentor's support has been instrumental in pushing me to grasp every opportunity available to me in support of my own personal development.

What has been the most exciting project you have worked on so far?

Currently at James Fisher Nuclear, I'm designing a Resource Management process across the company. This means I get to work with all of the project managers and pick up on information about all the projects JFN are working on. This project is really playing on and developing my organisational and communication skills and I'm really enjoying the exposure to the company which it has afforded me.

Find out how to start a journey like Lauren, by reading more about our Graduate Leadership Development Programme 2020