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Tenth anniversary for Westland’s Rising Stars

The search for the 2019 Westland Rising Stars has been launched.

The programme for the annual campaign was announced yesterday at the Garden Centre Association (GCA) Conference. Entries are now open to find up and coming employees at garden centres who show great potential and would benefit from the opportunity to further their skills and experiences as part of the Rising Stars Program. Nominations are open now until to Friday February 22nd 2019. These will be reviewed by a panel of judges who will decide on 10 finalists. The finalists will then attend a series of four workshops held by Gordon Emslie GCA inspector, designed to further their knowledge of the horticultural retail industry.

Finalists will then be tasked with developing a sales event for delivery in store during May 2019, they will receive mentoring for the Westland marketing team for this. Part of the program will include attending the GCA Conference where participants will present their ideas and inspire delegates. This year all presenters will receive an all‐expenses paid trip to the 2020 RHS Chelsea Flower Show, giving them the opportunity for networking and further inspiration to take back to their garden centres.

Jo Wilkinson from Westland commented: “Rising Stars, which is this year celebrating its tenth anniversary, aims to grow and nurture the best talent in the industry. To celebrate the anniversary, we are changing the format. We usually have one overall winner but now, instead, we are celebrating all ten finalists and their achievements. Each year we are overwhelmed by the volume of applications received, and the stories of the people being nominated. We are passionate about supporting the future of the horticultural industry and Rising Stars is just one of the many ways we do this.”

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA said: “This year we are excited to be working with Gordon Emslie, who is dedicated to instilling commercial skills combined with soft skills coaching for success. The continued support from Westland means that this industry leading training program continues to go from strength to strength and with no costs to garden centres for their staff to participate then what are you waiting for – apply today.”

To be eligible, candidates should hold a position up to junior management level, have access to financial data including sales and cost prices, be able to develop a sales or marketing idea for growing an area of the business and, perhaps most importantly, should demonstrate a drive and commitment that they wish to be developed.

Don’t delay as nominations close on Friday 22nd February 2019.

For media enquiries please contact Holly Daulby at Honest Communications on 07961 205812 or email holly@honestcommunications.co.uk.

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