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30th Nov 2012

How To Be A... Business Analyst

MANY careers have no set route into them and it is a matter of taking opportunities that present themselves and progressing organically through hard work and promotion.

Iain Joannides explains how a Christmas temp job started him on his career path to becoming a Business Navigation & Operations Manager for IKEA.

“I studied Hospitality Management in Dundee University in the late 90s. All my part-time jobs had been in restaurants both back and front of house and I loved the interaction with customers and the fast paced nature of the work.”

“After graduation I initially took a job at Virgin Megastores in Dundee as a ‘Christmas Temp’. I guess I then caught the retail bug and went on to join the HMV Graduate Trainee scheme a year later. I worked in several locations around  Ireland and ended up running the Belfast City Centre store.

“When IKEA came to Belfast I jumped at the chance to join a really progressive and successful global retailer. I was recruited as the Living Rooms Manger and tasked to recruit and train a new team; it was an exciting period where I learnt many new skills. ”

“Once settled, I had several roles within the Sales department but 18 months ago I moved into the ‘Business Navigation & Operations Manager’ role which I still hold today.  In IKEA many of the roles that would normally exist in Head Offices in say, London or Sweden are actually based in local stores, which allows anyone with an interest to engage in coaching or formal training with lots of managers with different roles & responsibilities.”

“IKEA presents so many opportunities; having roles like mine based in-store make you realise that your career path could change at any time and the re-training and support is always there. The majority of our senior team have done several different roles before settling where they are now, which is the most exciting thing about working at IKEA - you never know what might be around the next corner!”

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