John is a Project Manager based in Preston.
‘I’ve worked for some large companies during my career, but I’d always had an interest in BAE Systems because of the scale of the projects and products. I’ve been here for 15 years now. I went to a careers event and did some assessment tests and was offered a role working in research and development involving unmanned air vehicles. It ticked all the boxes for me – it was a niche, different kind of thing to be working on, with new technology, exploring the potential future of aircraft – and I was involved in everything from engineering to procurement, it was such a varied role. Every day is different when you are working with experimental products, it’s not an average office job. 
Since then, I’ve tried to make the most of the vast number of opportunities here. Talented people are nurtured to become even more talented, and there’s encouragement to try different parts of the business and gain new skills. I’ve always tried to be adventurous and take the opportunities that appear, and that’s given me a real breadth of skills and allowed me to progress through the business. I’m a mentor on the Inspiring Women Network, and I love doing that, helping to shape people, and helping them progress. I’ve had the benefit of some great advice from mentors throughout my career, and it’s good to now be able to share some of that. I feel really proud that people think I’ve got an opinion that’s worth listening to, and it’s rewarding to see their careers take off.
I’m now working in Shared Services, which is all the various things that make the business work, such as finance, HR, recruitment, and just like when I started here no two days are the same. I dip into so many different parts of the business and I’m learning all the time. Even after 15 years working here, I can get a phone call that means I’m needed to do something I’ve never done before. I’m never bored!
Every team I’ve been part of here has always felt like a family, people knit together really quickly. People can be themselves and there’s a place for everybody, regardless of gender, background or age – which I think is absolutely amazing. Everybody’s opinions are heard. If you’re motivated and want to push yourself to step up a level, lead a team, be a mentor, or work in another country - however you see your career developing, it’s all there for you. All it takes is a conversation.'

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We want everyone here to feel valued and empowered to thrive. Who you are should never define what you can do. We believe when you bring together different people and different perspectives it inspires creativity and drives innovation. It helps us fulfil our purpose and it's integral to our culture. Everyone is heard and respected here. 
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