Girls considering careers in manufacture told: ‘Just go for it’

By Mike Stones

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Drink manufacturing Young talent Industry

Girls considering careers in food or drink manufacturing should “Just go for it”, says the winner of the Food Manufacture Excellence Awards (FMEAs) Young Talent category Kodi Gledhill, from Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP).

“Just take the plunge,”​ said Gledhill, in this exclusive video interview, filmed at the 2017 FMEAs at the Hilton on Park Lane in London last November. “Don’t be nervous. Don’t think you’re not as good as men – just because there are quite a lot of them in the industry.

“Be positive. Be confident because they are really capable of doing just as well as men.”

Girls and women should consider careers in food and drink manufacturing because there are so many opportunities available to them and working in a team is very rewarding, she added.

‘Willing to progress you in your career’

“For me, it is absolutely fantastic to be part of a team as big as CCEP. There are a lot of people who are willing to help and willing to progress you in your career.”

Working in Britain’s biggest manufacturing sector was the best opportunity she had ever taken, said Gledhill. “I want other people to feel that too; to feel the positives from getting the career that I am having.”

Her work as an electrical engineer has already made a big contribution to an automation project that has saved 7t of carbon dioxide emissions and £14,000 over four years.

Improving manufacturing efficiency

The judges were impressed by evidence of her positive attitude and eagerness to learn, combined with a proven track record in improving manufacturing efficiency.

The Young Talent award has quickly become one of the most challenging categories for the judging panel. Awarded to a person under the age of 25, the Young Talent of the Year trophy celebrates the young man or woman who shows the best potential to become an industry leader of tomorrow.

Her achievements were celebrated in front of hundreds of food industry guests on November 1, as she collected the award from Food Manufacture sales manager Alix Hunter, representing category sponsor FoodManJobs​. They were joined on stage by awards host, English Rugby Union cup winner and former team captain Matt Dawson.

Read more about the young electrical engineer’s achievements here​ and about all the winners and finalists here​.

Meanwhile, do you know someone who could match Gledhill’s achievements or a business that could win one of the food and drink manufacturing Oscars in this year’s awards? If so, please register your interest in the FMEAs 2018 here​.

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