Meet Lee-Anne Mills, Business Operations Specialist, as she talks about her position and what she loves about being part of the Celtic Crew.
How did you begin working at Celtic Renewables?
LM: I knew John Stevenson, our Managing Director, before Celtic Renewables. When the opportunity came up, he encouraged me to apply, so I did. About a month later, I had an interview with Jim Purves, our Compliance & Operations Director, John, our CEO Mark Simmers and a recruiter in Edinburgh. It was a nice conversation about what I had done previously and what I could do for Celtic Renewables and the next day, I was offered the job! I was very excited, although this was totally out of my comfort zone. But I wanted the challenge of being able to set up something from its early days on, which is one of the reasons why I made the move.
What made you want to work at Celtic Renewables?
LM: I didn’t know anything about Celtic Renewables prior to the interview, so I had to do some research. The website told me a little bit about the ABE fermentation process and the industry, which was very interesting but also very different to the industries I had previously worked in, which were mainly mechanically based. But again, this was what excited me about the position. The idea of working for a start-up, seeing where this company could go in the future and where my career journey within Celtic Renewables would lead me… which I know now is from project support engineer, the position I started with, to business operations specialist, which is what I am now.
That was what mainly attracted me to Celtic Renewables, but also meeting the people who worked for the company back then – they are so passionate about what they are doing which rubbed off on me quickly and made me move along with it.
You’re a Business Operations Specialist at Celtic Renewables. What does this position entail?
LM: It kind of encompasses all areas of the business to ensure that we can operate. I work for the Compliance and Operations team, and we look after all the factors that ensure the company can operate. We take care of HR, insurance, general governance, project controls and make sure everything is in place and up to date.
The best way to describe the areas we focus on is to use the areas that are covered in a STEEPLE analysis; Social, Technological, Economic, Environmental, Political, Legal and Ethical, we ensure that the business complies or is protected from these external factors so that the business can always operate in the most efficient way. So, the position is quite extensive, I wear a lot of hats – but that is what makes it so exciting.
What is your favourite part about working at Celtic Renewables?
LM: Hands down, the people. I’ve worked in places that didn’t have that right mix of people. It could be an amazing job, one that you’ve always dreamt of doing, but when the people aren’t right for you, it can become really hard. It sounds cheesy, but at Celtic Renewables, we are a family, and this is one thing that I hope never changes. As the company grows, it is very important to us that we keep our culture – keeping the openness, the ability to challenge anything and always being able to have a laugh together.
What are you looking forward to seeing in the future of the industry?
LM: In the immediate future, I am looking forward to seeing the finished solvents, I can’t wait for that.
Further down the line, I want Celtic Renewables to be what it can be: a global organisation making a big impact, showing everyone how our products can make other products greener. And we will do so much more than what we are doing at the moment, beyond the solvents, we can make this world so much cleaner and really change the environment.
What is one thing you do in your day-to-day life to be more sustainable?
LM: I do quite a few things and I am always trying to improve. All my hair and skincare are plastic-free and vegan, I use eco-friendly conditioner and soaps and instead of washing capsules, I have laundry sheets which are plastic-free and more environmentally friendly as well. We also have an eco-friendly alternative for our cleaning products, where the same vials get refilled with non-toxic cleaning products and essential oils every month to be mixed with water in a glass spray bottle you use for life. My family is also very big on recycling and we try to reduce the usage of our gas central heating as much as possible, also by utilizing our open fireplace.
These are all little things that I think can make a big difference the more people do them, which is why I instil that into my children. We also speak a lot about these changes we as individuals can make at Celtic Renewables, we share our experiences and interesting things we find, such as recipes. I’ve always had an interest in sustainability, but since I have started working at Celtic Renewables, I am much more conscious of what I do and its impact on the environment, which is great, because I am always learning.