Current Role: Group Service Manager
Joined Tesco: 2021
Prior to joining Tesco as Group Service Manager, Emma Martin-Law had a varied career within the Armed Forces - including serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Below, Emma shares the different skills that have helped her in a civilian based role today.
In 1998 I decided to follow in my Dad’s footsteps and join the British Army. I had always had a love of Engineering and a curiosity of how things worked from an early age, so I decided that The Corps of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) was the place for me and I was right! My engineering discipline was Weapon Systems (Armourer) which involved repairing and servicing everything from 9mm Pistols to 155mm artillery systems (AS90), and on occasions test firing which was definitely the fun part!
When I joined the Army, I was a little naïve and never thought that I would actually go to war, but in March 2003 I deployed to Iraq for Op Telic 1 as part of the UK’s contribution to the overall Coalition effort to remove Saddam Hussein from power. With the threat of weapons of mass destruction hanging over us and daily updates about injured troops, it was a nervous time for everyone. I realised that I was more robust than I had thought, both physically and mentally which gave me a new-found confidence that has served me well through my career.
It became clear at an early stage that as well as enjoying all things Engineering, I also had a passion for Leadership and Management. After several years of promotions I was nominated to attended a selection course which would accelerate my career. I passed and went on to complete a 2 year course where I gained an HND in Mechanical Engineering Technology, and was awarded my final rank of Artificer Weapons, something that I am extremely proud of.
On my 34th Birthday I flew to Afghanistan on Op Herrick 17, which was to be my last deployment before leaving the Army. I was responsible for running an engineering workshop with 50+ Engineers, a mix of British Military and LECs (locally employed civilians). The work was extremely dynamic, fast paced and very demanding but I had an excellent team that consistently achieved great results.
During my 15 years’ service I met some truly outstanding people, I was posted all over the world and had the opportunity to visit some incredible places. I learned new skills such as becoming a boxing judge and timekeeper, became qualified as a kayak instructor and best of all learned to ride a motorbike and take part in Army Motocross events.
Since leaving the military I have had various Engineering roles in the rail sector and FMCG, and my current role as Group Service Manager for Tesco Maintenance. I have only been with Tesco for a short period of time, but it is obvious that the culture is a great fit for my values and behaviours and there is a sense of camaraderie, which is fantastic to see.
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