Ben Ireland

Gone Sailing…

At the end of placement three, the six grads all got together for another useful week of Learning and Development; some challenging sessions nonetheless led to some useful discussions (I still think we should have bought an island as our new product in the Product Development workshop) and time for reflection on the previous months. While some of the sessions were emotionally and mentally tough, everyone would agree that the highlight was probably the sailing session at Port Solent which rounded off the week – thanks to the new grads for coming down to join us! Here are a few photos for your general entertainment…

Categories: Ali, Ben Ireland, Guy, Janet, Jonathon, Pete | 1 Comment

Time flies when you’re having fun…

Hi everyone, Ali here – I’ll be taking over the editing of the blog for April –  it’s looking excellent so far, hopefully you are finding it informative, insightful and interesting. As you will read, all 6 of us are doing very different placements and with that comes a variety of experiences. If any readers are about to enter into the assessment centres or interviews then hopefully our blogs will give you further enthusiasm for the scheme and perhaps answer some of your thoughts/questions! That’s all from a snow filled day in Montreal (I was sure spring had arrived and then it snows again!)

Categories: Ali, Ben Ireland, Guy, Janet, Jonathon, Pete | Leave a comment

Looking back at TUI Sport

Ben wraps up his time at TUI Sport and tells us what he can from the secret world of mergers and acquisitions

This post comes with a great deal of hindsight, as I summarise my first placement while I’m more than half way through the second, but it feels like a week rather than seven!

I finished my role in the Sport Division with a report on the product and distribution review I’d put together and a presentation to the Sport Division board, highlighting my findings and recommendations. It seemed well received and was a gratifying end to some hard work.

I enjoyed my time in Sport and the level of autonomy in my role, despite the challenges this posed as a new starter. With a project spanning the division it gave me the opportunity to visit all the businesses, understand how the division operates strategically and meet lots of people.

If it lacked anything; it was an operational perspective of tour operating and not just strategic – but no doubt this will be addressed elsewhere. I left feeling positive, but looking forward to working as part of a closer team with the chance for some more passive learning.

Since the start of February I’ve been in the Sector Business Development team based in TUI Travel House, Crawley. There are three threads to this teams responsibilities; mergers and acquisition of new businesses; disposal of our businesses; and sector strategy.

I have been keen on getting exposure to this process for a long time (I looked at applying to Private Equity firms before TUI, but was put off by the need for accountancy qualifications!) as it gives great exposure to what a good business looks like.

It’s been a great place to learn about our Sector and each division; arriving at the start of the strategic planning or `Managing for Value` process, as we come to put together a `Factbase` to identify the market characteristics and financial performance of each division.

With responsibility for the completing the Sport and North American Specialist division fact bases, and involvement in the others, this role has taken me to Florida, had me sat in on divisional business reviews to the board, and got me thinking about where in all of these businesses I’d like to end up.

The next few weeks will be spent looking into prospective markets for TUI to move into…but that’s as much as I can say…..its top secret for now.

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All change – and onto placement two!

My apologies as Editor for the slight pause in posts – everyone worked hard to achieve all their deadlines for the end of placement one on Jan 21st, and then we all went to Crawley for a fabulous week of learning and development.  The six of us spent five packed days building on our skills and also had the opportunity to discuss our placements, and present our experiences to the Sector Board. Thanks to Jen, Ed and Steph and all our session leaders for a great week!  On Jan 31st we all joined our new offices: Ali goes to Jumpstreet in Montreal (Education Division), Ben to work in Finance/M & A for the Sector, Janet to Quark Expeditions in  Toronto (North American Specialist), Jon to Marketing for the Sector, Pete to TUI Sport in Manchester and Guy has flown back across the world in the other direction, to Adventure Tours Australia in Adelaide.  More information to follow!

Categories: Ali, Ben Ireland, Guy, Janet, Jonathon, Pete | Leave a comment

Our blog: one month old

Today marks the day of the first handover of the blog.  I think we’ve done fairly well so far to keep the entries coming – so I’d like to thank my fellow grads for making the first month such a success.  It’s going to be a really good way of keeping a public record of some of the key events of the graduate scheme, as well as letting the rest of you know how we’re finding it.  Feel free to interact with the blog – comment on anything you find interesting, agree/disagree with, or just fancy writing something down. 

So, without further ado, I’d like to hand over to Peter Buckley, who will be editing the blog for the month of December. I look forward to editing it again in May, when I’m sure it’ll be both full of extra features and a lot thicker with entries.


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More pictures from Lake Garda!

I’m getting a little bit addicted to this blogging business (this is Guy again).  I thought it would be much harder and more stressful – but it doesn’t seem to be so far.  Plus, I must publically thank one of my fellow grads who has made the site look more sexy last night.  Above is a clearer photo of all of us plus a lovely one of the sunset over Lake Garda (below).  Credits go to Janet!

Categories: Ali, Ben Ireland, Guy, Janet, Jonathon, Pete | Leave a comment

So, here we all are

Janet has just sent me through some photos she took during the induction week in Lake Garda.  I think this photo was taken just before our ‘gala’ dinner.  Everyone is looking very smart – and I know I’m the odd one out with a tie, but that was only to attempt to hide the fact that my suit was quite creased. 

So from left we are: Janet Galbraith, Guy Bromley, Alistair Randall, Pete Buckley, Jennifer Johnson (Graduate Coordinator), Ben Ireland, Jonathon Curtis and Stephanie Davison (Head of Resourcing for Sector).

Categories: Ali, Ben Ireland, Guy, Janet, Jonathon, Pete | 2 Comments

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