Name: Ludmila R.
Title: Product Manager
Career Area: Sales & Commercial
Location: São Paulo, SP, Brazil
Education: Degree in Food Engineering at UNICAMP and MBA in Finance and Administration at FGV
“The opportunity to be involved in the different areas of a business makes us distinct professionals, with a holistic view of the business.”
It is very important to me to work in an environment built on ethics and well-defined values, which are consistent with my own. At Cargill, everything is laid out very clearly, with no grey areas. We can unite efforts throughout our different areas of the business, thus being able to offer our clients unique solutions that add value to their own businesses.
Describe your work responsibilities and the importance of your role.
I am the product manager for the chocolate and compounds business. My main responsibilities are related to managing our product portfolio, in order to secure our targeted margins by managing pricing, sales channels, innovation projects and marketing actions.
Describe your day-to-day activities and the skills needed to perform well.
My main activities include pricing; focusing on the market; watching competitors, products and trends; managing innovation projects, such as the development of a new product line or a facelift of a current product; and managing our third-party projects and our social media efforts.
The most important skills for my current job are maintaining a deep understanding of our market and consumers, curiosity, resilience and leadership that keeps our team engaged.
Describe your career path. Where did you start and how did you get to where you are today?
While in college I was an intern at Unilever, and after graduation I entered Cargill through a trainee program. First, I worked in the commercial area, particularly during the expansion of the foodservice sales channel in the cocoa and chocolate business. My career progressed towards business development and product management, and now I am glad to provide the link between our business strategy and our production and sales operations.
What do you find most rewarding about your work?
I am able to understand the chocolate business and interact with both major and minor stakeholders, from raw material suppliers to our plants. I also enjoy general business planning.
Why did you choose to join Cargill and what keeps you here? In other words, how has a career at Cargill helped you to thrive?
Cargill provided me a world of possibilities in the beginning of my career. I was able to understand which path was the best for me, and the company gave me the chance to pursue this path. Through serious and constructive feedback and evaluations, I have been able to evolve and go in the direction I choose.
What advice would you give someone interested in a career at Cargill like yours?
A product manager must have a clear understanding of the whole business, in detail. The production steps, the product development pipelines and the marketing strategies should always be on our minds, in order to overcome daily challenges. Also, the macroeconomic situation plays a major role, affecting the suppliers, trading and marketing strategies, and product lines. The product manager must be aware of the importance of relevant events in our country and the broader world.
Share an interesting tidbit about yourself such as hobbies, volunteerism, favorite foods or activities, accomplishments inside or outside of work.
I enjoy sports and play tennis when I get the chance. I also practice yoga regularly. I am also having adventures in the kitchen learning how to cook.