SAMANTHA SMITH: MY KEYLINE APPRENTICESHIP JOURNEY
We recently caught up with Samantha Smith, National Sales Manager at Keyline to find out more about her career and how the Keyline Civils Specialist Trusted Future Leader, Level 5 apprenticeship has benefitted her.

CAN YOU GIVE US AN OVERVIEW OF YOUR EXPERIENCE TO DATE?
 

Before Keyline, I worked at Marshalls Plc for 17 years and in that time, I gained so much experience and really developed my career - fulfilling numerous roles including Office Junior, Credit Controller and Area Sales Manager. 

I joined Keyline over four years ago as a Key Account Manager, before moving into a national role as a Business Development Manager where I worked to increase Keyline's market share in the hard landscaping market. I later joined the leadership team in the North and Midlands as a Regional Trading Manager before finally taking on the challenge of creating the dedicated national infrastructure team. We work with our regional colleagues to enhance Keyline’s existing infrastructure service and are ideally placed to add value to the proposed pipeline of work ahead – and work hard to ensure every customer receives the best service possible. 

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THE KEYLINE TRUSTED FUTURE LEADER, LEVEL 5 APPRENTICESHIP?
 

Although I had built up extensive knowledge of the industry over the years and felt confident that I could successfully add value to customers’ experience, I had never managed a team before. I felt the apprenticeship would help me develop my leadership style, as well as hone my business skills to ensure that I can support colleagues and customers in the most effective way.

FOR ANYONE LOOKING TO TAKE ON A SIMILAR ROLE, CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT THE KEYLINE TRUSTED FUTURE LEADER, LEVEL 5 APPRENTICESHIP ENTAILS?

The apprenticeship is split into a series of modules focused on business and leadership. There is a mix of theory-based learning as well as on-the-job skill development, which is great as you get to apply the techniques you learn in real life business scenarios.
 
HOW HAS THE APPRENTICESHIP SHAPED YOUR APPROACH TO YOUR CURRENT ROLE?
 

It has really helped with my approach to team development and I now have a greater appreciation of just how influential a leader can be for a team. I feel the apprenticeship has opened my eyes to what it takes to be a good leader and how best to get everyone working together to ensure a positive customer experience.

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR APPRENTICESHIP AND ROLE AS NATIONAL SALES MANAGER AT KEYLINE?
 

I love working in construction and I am proud to say that I work for the UK’s number one civils specialist. The support of my colleagues is second to none and by working together I feel we are able to offer fantastic customer service. 

I also love seeing my team develop! They work so well together and that makes me very proud. 
  
WHAT IS THE MOST VALUABLE LESSON YOU FEEL YOU’VE LEARNED SINCE STARTING YOUR APPRENTICESHIP?


The biggest lesson I have learnt is never to assume, and to always think before you take any action. It is important to have confidence in your own abilities and knowledge, but always try to find out all of the facts before you make decisions. Gaining the full picture goes a long way when it comes to helping customers in the most efficient way.
 
WOULD YOU RECOMMEND THE KEYLINE TRUSTED FUTURE LEADER, LEVEL 5 APPRENTICESHIP TO ANYONE ELSE LOOKING TO FURTHER THEIR CAREER AT KEYLINE?


Absolutely! It is a great way to learn and develop your skills – as well as build confidence and show dedication and commitment to your role and progression. I would encourage anyone thinking about taking on the apprenticeship to speak to someone who has gone through it, to really understand what is expected and how to get the most out of the course. 

To find out more about our dedicated infrastructure team visit:
https://blog.keyline.co.uk/new-dedicated-infrastructure-team  

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