Country of origin: Italy
Sales & Operations Manager, Piccolo
LUMS’s global ranking and reputation, combined with its high-quality teaching and international outlook, made my choice of university easy. I highly valued the opportunity to live on campus surrounded by a peaceful landscape. I was also fascinated by the wide variety of extracurricular activities, voluntary experiences and student-led societies I could immerse myself in. Finally, winning a generous scholarship played an important role, too.
I chose the MSc Management programme because I wanted to gain hands-on experience in consulting through engaging with practical projects and to specialise in strategic management, a subject I am very enthusiastic about. Moreover, I aimed to enhance my international awareness by studying in a very diverse cohort. For instance, my class comprises more than twenty nationalities, and I am currently working with three students from India, China and England on a real consultancy project.
The programme is highly challenging and demanding, yet greatly rewarding in terms of personal growth and development. Teamwork plays a fundamental role throughout the course, helping me to improve not only my organisational and time-management skills, but also my cultural awareness. The wide variety of subjects and practical projects is no doubt a great feature of this programme. You can expect to learn a lot in a very short time frame, but commitment always remains the key to success!
Volunteering as a maths buddy for primary school pupils is my best moment at Lancaster so far! Once a week I go to a primary school in town and run a three-hour maths club, organising activities and games for energetic young children. Their pervasive enthusiasm invigorates me, and I get an opportunity to unwind in a completely different and stimulating environment.
Being always eager to step out of my comfort zone and break through my limits, I find that Lancaster University offers a huge array of opportunities in this regard. For example, I currently hold roles such as postgraduate student ambassador, academic student representative, events officer for the consulting society, and careers team assistant coordinating two employability fairs.
I received a generous £ 5,000 academic scholarship that helped me greatly to self-finance my studies. Winning a scholarship was not easy, but the benefit of it was worth it. I also worked part-time in town as a bartender in order to earn some extra money, although finding a job or some paid activities on campus is also feasible.
I used the LUMS Careers Team support services in order to find new career opportunities and prepare thoroughly for phone and face-to-face interviews. Through LUMS’ numerous careers fairs and networking opportunities with employers, I found various employment opportunities, which I investigated further and applied for. Throughout the selection processes, LUMS Careers Team always helped me to prepare well for interviews, provided me with tips and hints on the different interview styles, gave me leaflets and useful material to gain more knowledge, and put me in contact with helpful people and improved my network. This was all invaluable help, for sure!
As soon as I completed the MSc Management programme, I went to work at FMCG giant Anheuser-Busch InBev on their 10-month Global Management Trainee programme. Subsequently, I was promoted to Inventory Deployment Team Lead for South Europe in Prague, Czech Republic, where I managed the logistics operations for France, Italy and Spain.
In February 2017, I took up a new role in London at start-up Piccolo (www.mylittlepiccolo.com) as Sales & Operations Manager, travelling nationally and internationally to grow sales in the UK and enter new global markets. Piccolo is a new brand of baby food, drawing inspiration from the Mediterranean approach to health and wellbeing. Piccolo gives 10% of its profits to food education and is working in partnership with the prestigious National Childbirth Trust – the first baby food brand to ever to do so. The Mediterranean approach to nutrition and lifestyle is one that champions fresh ingredients, lovingly prepared, shared with friends and family. At Piccolo, we believe that Mediterranean goodness is all about promoting that life is better when there is a balance in areas such as nutrition, flavour, family and community.