Move - or stay put?
Branch Manager Chynna Carby has worked at four different locations since joining Enterprise in 2013. This has included several challenging locations. She tells Drive how she thinks this has given her the breadth of experience to succeed.
I first worked for Enterprise in Manchester because I wanted to be somewhere different from my home city, Birmingham. I had worked for other companies and I was very keen to get promoted when I joined Enterprise.
My first move was after 10 months when I passed my MQI. I moved back to Birmingham as a management assistant at a new branch that had only been open one month. I was there for just two months when I applied and got a position as assistant manager at West Bromwich.
I wasn’t very well known in the area so I didn’t think that I would get the job – but I did. I got the job because Enterprise was different to other companies where I had worked.
My experience at other companies was that when you go for a promotion managers are looking for someone they know and like – someone who has “earned their brownie points”. Sometimes I could see that I was more suited to a position than others who had been there longer.
So I thought that would be the same at Enterprise. When the ad came out for the assistant manager job I decided to apply for it for the experience. My branch manager helped me to prepare for the interview, but I was certain I was not going to get it. And then I did.
The fact that I was able to move around means that I got experience of working in lots of different types of branches.
People can hesitate to apply for a role especially if a branch has a tough reputation. I always say: apply for positions, go for the experience, take the feedback.
Birmingham city centre branch is challenging because it’s a flagship branch. My previous branch was less than half the size. Everything has to be fast, and it’s a mix of everything: businesses, travellers who get off the train, replacement customers and tourists.
Our customers know exactly what they want. They are mostly male and being female that can be difficult. If customers prefer to deal with my male assistant manager, then I don’t mind. When they ask for the manager and they see me, sometimes they are surprised. It doesn’t faze me because I treat all customers the same.
People can hesitate to apply for a role especially if a branch has a tough reputation. I always say: apply for positions, go for the experience, take the feedback. If you don’t get a job, make sure that you do everything that the interviewer said you needed to develop.
Take the risk because you never know. Even if you think you don’t have the experience, say because you’ve got experience of a small branch and you’re trying for a big branch, try anyway, keep pushing. I applied for every job that came up. Always take the risk!