After seeing the placement advertised on Enterprise’s website, Richard Luckett instantly knew that it was something he wanted to do. Several interviews later the job was his.
"From day one the responsibilities of the job become very apparent," writes Richard. "A full week’s training at the regional head office in Redditch was the first real insight I had of my role in the company. The time here was a mixture of training as well as team building during the evening time. The first 2 weeks in were a steep learning curve, spent grounded in the office learning the basics of the business but my colleagues seemed only too happy to help me out, something later in my placement I would mirror myself.
"After two weeks in the office I was handed my first set of car keys and my first opportunity to go and collect a client up and bring them to the branch. I remember being nervous but also buzzing with excitement. The responsibility here was something that I hadn’t been exposed to before, I was driving a company car to pick up a client who I would build a rapport with and then serve and look after while they were in hire.
"As I began to settle in the company, the weeks flew by, with every 6 weeks or so having a training day at Redditch in order to reinforce the skills and develop new ones. Constant training and development encouraged me to work towards my next goals as did the enthusiasm of my team.
"Within 3 months we had a new starter in the branch, also doing an internship with ERAC who I was able to train and guide in the same way I was. This was great for me as not only did it mean as I could put to test the training and development skills I had learnt on my course.
"I passed stage 1 and stage 2 of my internal management MQI qualification with ERAC receiving a £100 bonus on each stage as a ‘well done’ for passing with 98% and 99% retrospectively. I worked on other tasks in this period too such as an employee safe driving study and presentation to the Risk Manger who was overwhelmed by the quality of this project.
"With several managerial changes in the latter part of 2012 and early 2013, I suddenly found myself working in the second busiest branch in the West Midlands as the acting assistant manager. My previous assistant manager had moved on to another branch with no direct replacement due for 8-12 weeks. My colleagues panicked at this prospect but I knew it was my time to make a name for myself in the business; I took over projects such as ‘Fuel Captain’, ‘Damage Captain’ and ‘Maintenance Captain’ and quickly become a fundamental part of the business. I also was given my own set of keys so I could open and close the branch.
"I began to have more control of the daily operations and before I knew it I was running the day, with the branch manager getting on with other tasks in the branch.
"It was only at this point I realised how far I had come - I was now running a £1m business on a daily basis balancing 225 cars, a 205 customer base and a daily average of 25 deals. I was managing a team of up to 8 who had great respect for me. This was a real test of my leadership and management style and skills, making sure I was getting the tasks done as well as retaining the respect of my colleagues. On Good Friday 2013, (historically the second busiest day of the year for ERAC), I ran the branch myself with the branch manager off all day. I received excellent feedback from my area manager.
"As I write this, I’m mid-Atlantic on a flight to the US, on fully-paid holiday leave which shows Enterprise really see their interns as fully fledged employees.
"I have 2 months’ worth of my placement with Enterprise left, but I have already been offered three great opportunities by my area and city manager. I will be continuing my placement through until September 2013, when I will be then going part-time during my final year at University. After graduation, I have been offered a permanent position with ERAC meaning I can continue from where I left off this year.
"The placement has put into practice many theories I studied at Worcester and related to a whole number of different modules. I wasn’t expecting to get as much out of the placement as I actually have and would recommend a placement to any student.
"In September 2013 I start my new role with Enterprise as a Campus Brand Manager at the University of Worcester. I will be Enterprise’s eyes and ears looking out for Talent for the Management Trainee graduate and intern roles."