Jessica Barton

Barnsdale Hall Hotel in Rutland has become a second home. Here is where the Anglia Ruskin BDP trainees have their study block periods, and also where Larrissa Way and I went up to last week to hold a guest speaker session with the new BDP trainees that have just landed in the business.

It was like looking at ourselves in the mirror, only one year younger.

We arrived in the afternoon, mid way through Cohort 6b's Enterprise and Entrepreneurship lecture. They had just found out what their group projects were to be on and also who they would be working with over the next eight months. We sat with the newly found teams and listened to them squabble over who would be team leader… when the next meeting would be… what the best research approach was… and more importantly - what colour pen to use on the flip chart! 

After the initial dust settled, the teams soon began to get into the real grit of their new challenge and even gave us a presentation on what they had been up to so far. Really excited to see what they have to offer at their first moderated presentation next month - there was a real sense of talent and ambition heaving from the room.

In the evening Larrissa and I ran a session on 'How to Survive the BDP - The Boot Camp', which consisted of three separate sessions - 'How to Survive in Branch'; 'How to Survive Your Assignments'; and also 'Networking and Mentoring'. My favourite activity consisted of various tasks which the teams had to plan and carry out within just 10 minutes - a way to practise time management and also team building skills. The tasks included eating a whole lemon; hand-writing the alphabet 100 times; building a five story card house and French plaiting someone's hair. It was great fun! 

So lucky to have front row seats to see the up coming leadership journey of such aspiring young talent.