Introducing one of our new graduates… Rachel Ballard

Introducing one of our new graduates… Rachel Ballard

In September 2016 I graduated from Oxford with a BA in Music, knowing that music for me would always be an amateur interest and hobby, not a career. ‘So now what?’ I thought to myself. My mind went to the next thing I loved; chocolate. I found myself working at Paul A Young Fine Chocolates, arriving at work every day to one of the best smells the world has to offer, melted chocolate. I decided, however, that my love for chocolate should also fall under the ‘amateur interest and hobby’ category. Back to the first question, ‘So now what?’

At the university careers fair I saw a presentation called ‘In House or Agency’, with guest speakers from Unilever and none other than The Value Engineers. Susannah Cohen deserves selling points here; she described what to me sounded like the perfect job, and exactly the direction in which I wanted to start building a career. By entering into the world of brand consulting I would get to work with a huge array of companies in different markets, targeting different consumers. It is an opportunity to live and breathe different brands; to really understand them, what their purpose is and what makes them tick.

Crucially for me, though, TVE combines strategic and analytical rigour with creative thinking. This combination can be found in every individual at TVE as well as in the way each team approaches their projects. It is this combination that attracted me, I didn’t want to lose what felt like my creative heritage, but I also wanted to be challenged. After two weeks, TVE has lived up to both.

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