Emily Dowden
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Emily Dowden - European Procurement Leadership Programme

What were you doing before Mars?

While I was at the University of Nottingham studying Maths & Management I got involved with a social enterprise organisation called Enactus, which is a global non-profit organisation committed to using entrepreneurial action to transform lives. With Enactus I ran an ice cream tricyle business which employed young adults with learning disabilities. My time working with Enactus not only allowed me to explore the basics of commerce but also introduced me to Mars, with whom they had a long-standing relationship.

What do you do at Mars?

I was encouraged to apply for the graduate scheme and chose the European Procurement Leadership Program because buying is what I had enjoyed the most with my ice-cream business. In my first year of the graduate scheme I was able to travel all over Europe; from the Netherlands to Germany and Lisbon to Madrid. My second year saw me procuring raw material and more in charge of the financials side of buying. This was a lot of responsibility and quite scary at first, but it’s fantastic to know that you have support from senior leaders to guide you through.

What does a typical day look like for you?

A typical day looks busy – but in a good way! Aside from the day-to-day negotiations with suppliers and liaising with our R+D (Research & Development) teams, we actually do a lot of work on the “bigger picture”. Sustainability is very important to Mars as Mutuality is one of our Five Principles that govern the way we make decisions. With this in mind, I spend a lot of time working on long-term strategies for our suppliers and the business to ensure that we and they are moving forward in a sustainable way.

What’s the best thing about working at Mars?

It’s a cliché, but I have to say the people. At Mars you are a name and not just a number. Everybody is super supportive and you quickly get yourself a work family who you can ask for help whenever you need it.

My favourite Mars brand is?

Milky Way.

What Mars product would you be and why?

I would be Revels as they are always exciting.

What is your personal Mars motto?

Drive the change you want to see. 

Interested in applying to the European Procurement Leadership Programme? Find our more information here >> 
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