Name: Geetika Obhrai
Job title: Sales and Operations Executive
Company: Nix & Kix, London
Education: Economics and Finance at Surrey University
Explain your job in a sentence in a sentence (or two) I’m responsible for overseeing the product from the beginning, as raw materials, to a finished product on the shelf, so pretty much anything you see on the shelf will have my fingerprints on in some form! It’s also about the experience that the customer gets and how to optimize that in terms of efficiency and quality.
Why did you decide to go for a career in food? A lot of people in my discipline were applying for jobs in banking and finance placements. Personally I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do. I’ve always had a passion for food and coming from an Indian family I’ve always loved spicy food. Being the designated chef at university meant that naturally I was drawn to the FMCG industry. With a background in sales and retail I have always enjoyed working in fast-paced environments, so when I heard of Nix & Kix, a growing startup focusing on healthy soft drinks with a kick, it was a match made in heaven.
What does a typical day look like for you? The great thing about my job is that every day is different in some sense; whether it is the people that I get to talk to or the problems that may present themselves. I always have to be on the ball! My day generally starts with processing orders for customers and keeping on top of stock management and invoicing. Alongside this I make sure that I put time aside for bigger projects that generally involve streamlining the processes within operations. The great thing about Nix & Kix is that as a startup, individual contribution is really valued.
Tell us about how you went about applying for your job. What was the process like? With what felt like my hundredth application form, applying to Nix & Kix is more of a hazy memory than anything to say the least. The process was straightforward; I made sure my CV was up to date and sent in a cover letter. The next stage of the process was some E-tray exercises, which tested both my organisational and reasoning skills. I had practiced a few of these beforehand so this definitely built my confidence. Following this I was invited for an informal chat and then a final interview where I got a tour around the office and got to meet some of the employees. It was great to get a feel of the company.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about working in food & drink? I think my biggest surprise with Nix & Kix was the size of the team. I expected around 50 people and the reality is a lot closer to ten.
“It’s a really fun industry so show your personality and that you’re enthusiastic”
What advice would you give to other young people looking to get into the food & drink industry? Make yourself stand out; it’s a really fun industry so show your personality and that you’re enthusiastic about the industry. Alongside this I’d say to put yourself out there and make the most of any networking events that may present themselves. Stay proactive and on your feet; make a LinkedIn account, and do as many applications as you can. Getting a placement is extremely competitive so make sure you stay on top of it. The best piece of advice given to me has been don’t be nervous in an interview and don’t be afraid to ask questions; interview the employer too because it’s important to find a company that’s the right fit for you.
What’s the best part about working for a food company? I would have to say the best part is that no two days are the same, the same way no two customers are. It’s really taught me a lot of transferable skills and really opened my eyes on what working-life could be like once I’ve completed my degree, so I definitely think I’ll be going back to university a lot more motivated. And of course the events and freebies don’t hurt.
What’s your ultimate career dream? I think I’m still very unsure what my ultimate career dream is but my current role is great in giving me a variety of exposure, so I feel like I’m that one step closer to narrowing it down. I think that I’ve had a really positive experience in my current role so I’m sure that the food & drink industry is something I’ll remain close to.