Jamie joined Croda in 1998
Jamie joined Croda in 1998
After graining my HNC in Microbiology & Biochemistry at another company, I decided to move to Croda to further develop my career. I joined in March 1996 as a Raw Material Chemist at the Rawcliffe bridge site. In this role I was responsible for the testing and approval of all raw materials coming onto to the site for us in production. This was a good induction to the site and a great way to learn about the materials use in production.
In the September of my first year at Croda, A role of Staff Process Operator became available in the Ester and Lano plant. As I had a young family, the idea of shift work appealed to me as it meant I was able to see more of my children during the day time. The site management backed me as long as I still challenged myself and tried to climb the ladder through the operational route. This was the first time that I had any real exposure to management as I had to look after a team of 2 people.
After two years on the plant an opportunity became available in the shift management team as an assistant shift supervisor. This was a real step up in responsibility as I was second to the Shift Supervisor who managed the whole site out of hours. There were 12 people on shift at any time which is where I really started to learn about management and the role helped to broaden my skills further
An opportunity arose in 2001 to become the Plant Manager of the Acid Chloride plant, Molecular Distillation and also managing the biological effluent treatment plant. Along with managing my own staff this is where I first came across managing multi-departmental teams working on various projects. This is where I really understood the value of personal development for myself and my team to improve our performance. During this time Croda spent a lot of time and effort in my personal development, providing me the opportunity to attend various courses like NVQ Level 3 Management, Emergency Team training and NEBOSH Health & Safety.
After a site reorganisation, I was given the opportunity to have responsibility of the Alkoxylation plant along with the plants that I already managed. This role was a more strategic role looking at the 5 year development plan of the facility and also gave me first real interaction with the commercial teams. Again, Croda helped me to develop in areas that I needed for this step up in responsibility by facilitating my training in Finance for Non-Financial Managers and getting results through others.
After another site reorganisation, the role of Manufacturing Manager was made redundant so I took a post as A400 Plant Manager while I reviewed my options within the company. It was at this point that I decided that I needed to speak to the personnel department and the commercial team management to see if there were any options at Cowick Hall.
After various meetings with some of the Industrial business leaders, I decided that I wanted to challenge myself and move across to Cowick. In February, I filled the role as the UK & Ireland Rep for the newly formed Process Additives team. This was a great vote of confidence from the company and really re-energised my career. A lot of people were prepared to offer me advice in helping me with the transition from operations to the commercial team.
After looking at a few opportunities to rise up the management ladder in sales, I was offered the chance to become the IC Key Account Manager. This role involved working with the sites, project managing various initiatives, trying to maximise the revenue we get from these streams. I also have been given the task of project managing the launch of the first new product for IC. This again uses all my knowledge and techniques that I have picked up within my previous roles, especially working with different teams trying to achieve one goal.
In 2015 Industrial Chemicals invested in a dedicated team to work on Phase Change Materials. I was given the role of Sales Development Manager and had to put a proposal together to set up a new team and take this new innovative product range to the market. This was heavily focused on my project management skills and needed very clear and concise communication with the global management team. I had to liase with the US and WEEEMA Sales Management looking at investment in business development roles within their area, along with working with the technical team to invest in extra experienced resource at Gouda ensuring that we achieved the projected sales growth that was outlined.