Following last month’s column covering different ways to study for the BMF Diploma in Merchant Management, sales representative Adam Holman and branch manager Colin Campbell from St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies share their thoughts on achieving the qualification.
Both were looking to gain insight into the management process and had raised the possibility of formal training with their MD. It turned out that the company had recently been in touch with the BMF to discuss training and had identified the Diploma as a good option for those seeking to progress their career.
The Diploma is designed to improve the skillset, confidence and competence of aspiring managers, and prepare them for promotion — making it a win-win for St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies, and for Adam and Colin.
Undertaking the Diploma alongside a busy day job requires a high degree of commitment. This is one reason why the BMF now offers the Certificate in Merchant Management as a standalone qualification covering the first three modules of the full Diploma, and which enables students to continue to the Diploma and complete the remaining six modules after a break.
“Undertaking the Diploma alongside a busy day job requires a high degree of commitment. This is one reason why the BMF now offers the Certificate in Merchant Management as a standalone qualification covering the first three modules of the full Diploma, and which enables students to continue to the Diploma and complete the remaining six modules after a break.”
However, Adam and Colin chose to go straight to the 18 month Diploma programme, with each of the nine modules covering a different aspect of the management process, including areas that are specific to the merchant industry. Here, they explain the work involved: “To complete the course and achieve the Diploma we had to attend quarterly group workshops where we would go through the latest module, discus the concepts covered with our tutor and the other candidates and participate in related group exercises.
“We were also required to do 4-5 hours of self-study a week, reading course notes and answering questions to demonstrate understanding. The format for each Module consisted of 15 initial questions relating to the course notes, followed by a more personal question requiring candidates to relate the theme to their own working life, by describing a situation that had occurred at work and the positive, or negative, attributes associated with it.
“The final element for each module required us to prepare a detailed answer, or report, on two given areas of the course work studied that quarter.”
Although they admit it was hard to find the energy and motivation to keep going at times, particularly when work was extremely busy, with the support and encouragement they received from their employer and from their BMF tutor, Richard Green, their persistence paid off. Both gained their qualification and would happily recommend the Diploma to others: “The course gave us a great deal of insight into the duties and responsibilities of a manager while teaching us new techniques and methods.
“Understanding the processes needed for a successful operation has helped us in our daily business and improved customer, supplier and staff relationships.”
To find how the BMF Diploma in Merchant Management programme can help you and your team, please contact Becky Stokes, BMF Training & Admin Support via email@example.com