If there is one thing that we learned during our first week in the Corporate Management Trainee Program (CMTP), it is that our cohort is in for a unique ride.
In a week where we toured the Heinz Innovation Center, tried our hand at our first case study and packed 20,000 meals packaged with Heinz Micronutrient Campaign sachets for the hunger relief non-profit Stop Hunger Now, we also began envisioning ourselves in the different tracks that fall under the Corporate umbrella: Marketing, Operations, Finance, Commercial, Food Science and General Management.
At the company, this isn’t simply a question of playing to our strengths. Instead, we’re encouraged to do some crucial soul-searching, and to step outside of our respective comfort zones. For those of us who majored in Food Science or Marketing, the chance to try our hand at a different role can be daunting, just as a foray into Finance can intimidate a Humanities major. But for Trainees who strive to make the most of the CMTP as a learning experience, it is too valuable of an opportunity to pass up. Suddenly, the fact that the CMTP is labelled as an “adventure” rather than a job makes sense; the space to make mistakes and to take risks presents an incredible opportunity for those willing to challenge themselves.
The Company’s boldness resonated particularly clearly on Wednesday, when the merger between Kraft and Heinz was approved by shareholders. On that day, the CEO of the new Kraft Heinz family, Bernardo Hees, also took the time to meet with our Trainee cohort.When he spoke to us, we learned that the CMTP is called “CEO-sponsored” for a reason.
Bernardo demonstrated that the CMTP is a priority for the entire organization, and in turn, encouraged us to be audacious, disruptive thinkers. It’s hard to imagine a better introduction to the distinctive Kraft Heinz Company worldview.