To Foundation and Beyond

So you have decided to take the plunge. You have read through all the great blogs on this page which has given you one conclusion – the IBM Apprenticeship is where you see yourself. After looking through all of my blogs it hit you that you want the same thing, so you’re welcome.

Assessment centre arrives and you pass through with flying colours, nothing is going to stop you from getting to the sweet life. First day on the job and your excitement threatens to boil over as you begin your career. You’re meeting Managers, Clients and other Apprentices and start to feel at home. The 3 years you have in foundation will not be wasted as you attend courses, work on multiple accounts and build your network. You may even be inclined to write about your experiences on the IBM Apprenticeship Blog. Impacts that you make to your clients are meaningful and acknowledged to the point that your are depended on as if you don’t have the tittle of ‘apprentice’.

So when the 3 years is done and you have given yourself a head start in your career, what’s next? What happens now? Lets have a look at some people that have left foundation and have pursued their careers further.

Two people that I believe to be great examples are Hayley James and Manuela Doutel-Haghighi. Hayley was one of the first apprentices to join IBM Foundation back in 2010. During her 3 years in the scheme she has won the National Apprentice Award in 2014 and came runner up in 2013 to a fellow IBMer Sadie Hawkins. In an interview she did last year at the awards evening she expressed an interest to one day being a CEO at IBM. Now that she has moved out of foundation she has continued to work towards that goal as well as any others she wishes to achieve. Whist working as a Release Manager at one of IBM’s largest account, she still takes time to help new apprentices and graduates with on boarding including myself when I joined a year ago.

Manuela Doutel-Haghighi was an IBM Graduate in 2001. She is currently a Complex Projects Executive for Global Technology Services (GTS). Having developed a talent in outsourcing business, after the graduate programme had ended she then had the opportunity to occupy a role that would expand the business as part of IBM’s Growth Market Initiatives in South Africa. Upon returning in 2010 she was given more responsibility as an Account Executive for 100 companies in Africa, Europe and the Middle East. Like Hayley, Manuela has also helped new graduates into IBM as an Early Professionals Manager (EPM)

These are two shinning examples of how you can take advantage of what IBM offers. Hayley has used her time to build eminence both within IBM and across the UK, as shown by her awards. Manuela has taken her acquired expertise to help IBM across boarders on large scale and demanding projects.

What I find most important of all is both women have not forgotten the path they took to success and have always been willing to build on IBM’s early professional schemes and help anyway they can.

Please take the time to find more people that have succeeded beyond the scheme and hear their story. Plenty of former Graduates and Apprentices have stories to tell. What will your story be?

Joseph Barry

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