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Samantha Smith: My Keyline Apprenticeship Journey

11 Mar

We recently caught up with Samantha Smith, National Sales Manager at Keyline, to learn more about her career and how the Keyline Civils Specialist Trusted Future Leader, Level 5 Apprenticeship has benefitted her. Keyline Civils Specialist is the UK's leading supplier of civils, drainage and heavy building materials and is part of the Travis Perkins Group. At the Group, we offer 38 Apprenticeships and if you’re interested in finding out more, read Samantha’s story below and hear what her Apprenticeship entailed.

Can you give us an overview of your experience to date?

Before Keyline, I worked at a landscaping and construction company. In my 17 years at that business, I gained so much experience and really developed my career, fulfilling numerous roles, including Office Junior, Credit Controller and Area Sales Manager.

I joined Keyline over four years ago as a Key Account Manager before moving into a national role as a Business Development Manager. My role was to increase Keyline's market share in the hard landscaping market. I later joined the leadership team in the North and Midlands as a Regional Trading Manager before finally taking on the challenge of creating the dedicated national infrastructure team. We work with our regional colleagues to enhance Keyline’s existing infrastructure service and are ideally placed to add value to the proposed pipeline of work ahead – and work hard to ensure every customer receives the best service possible.

Why did you choose the Keyline Trusted Future Leader, Level 5 Apprenticeship?

Although I had built up extensive knowledge of the industry over the years and felt confident that I could successfully add value to customers’ experience, I had never managed a team before. I felt the Apprenticeship would help me develop my leadership style and hone my business skills, to ensure that I could support colleagues and customers in the most effective way.

For anyone looking to take on a similar role, can you explain what the Keyline Trusted Future Leader, Level 5 Apprenticeship entails?

The Apprenticeship is split into a series of modules focused on business and leadership. There is a mix of theory-based learning as well as on-the-job skill development, which is great as you get to apply the techniques you learn in real-life business scenarios.

How has the Apprenticeship shaped your approach to your current role?

It has really helped with my management skills and approach to team development. I now have a greater appreciation of just how influential a leader can be for a team. I feel the Apprenticeship has opened my eyes to what it takes to be a good leader and how best to get everyone working together to ensure a positive customer experience.

What do you enjoy most about your Apprenticeship and role as National Sales Manager at Keyline?

I love working in construction, and I am proud to say that I work for the UK’s number one civils specialist. The support of my colleagues is second to none, and by working together, I feel we are able to offer fantastic customer service.

I also love seeing my team develop! They work so well together, and that makes me very proud.

What is the most valuable lesson you feel you’ve learned since starting your Apprenticeship?

The biggest lesson I have learnt is never to assume and to always think before you take any action. It is important to have confidence in your own abilities and knowledge, but always try to find out all the facts before you make decisions. Gaining the full picture goes a long way when it comes to helping customers.

Would you recommend the Keyline Trusted Future Leader, Level 5 Apprenticeship to anyone else looking to further their career at Keyline?

Absolutely! It is a great way to learn and develop your skills, build confidence, and show dedication and commitment to your role and progression. I would encourage anyone thinking about taking on the Apprenticeship to speak to someone who has gone through it in order to understand what is expected and how to get the most out of the course.

To find out more about our dedicated infrastructure team visit: https://blog.keyline.co.uk/new-dedicated-infrastructure-team

Are you interested in doing an Apprenticeship?

An Apprenticeship with Travis Perkins is a chance to embark upon a rewarding career within a group that has over 20 industry leading businesses to its name. We have a suite of Apprenticeships from Level 2 to Level 7, so you can continue to develop your career with us, all the way up to the boardroom.

If Samantha’s story has inspired you to take your career to the next level then check out our latest Apprenticeships . Or, read more Apprenticeship stories to hear what other colleagues at the Group have learnt from their experience.

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