Our People: Sonali

Graduate Trainee – Deal Advisory in Leeds

Bachelor in Commerce (Honours degree), Delhi University and MSc in Management, Cass Business School London.

“My degree subject didn’t just deal with theory. It was very practical and built communication skills which have been really useful in my client-facing role.

I was drawn to KPMG because they have a very good reputation. There was also the opportunity for study leave, so I could expand my qualifications, without having to pay for them myself.

I hadn’t even heard of Leeds before I moved here. Within 15 days, I had moved to a totally new city with no friends. It was daunting. But as soon as I arrived, my performance manager took the time to spread the word of my background and everybody was so accommodating. They took a real interest in me and how I was feeling. I had lots of lunch invitations!

Overall, the culture is very supportive here. You can bring your real self to work and even the Partners are completely approachable. They understand that you’ve got a life outside work and the pressure you can be under. After tackling big projects you’ll get downtime. I didn’t necessarily expect this in this field.

I’ve made great friends on the graduate scheme, not just only on my cohort but higher up in the organisation. We share hobbies and do activities together. Last Christmas, a colleague and I volunteered to do the Christmas party for Leeds and Manchester. We had a budget and full responsibility for the evening’s events. It was amazing. Everybody enjoyed it.

Career progression can be fast here. If you really want something, you can get there quickly. You don’t always have to wait five years or some arbitrary amount of time.

Training is very important, whether that’s online or in the classroom. If you want to enhance your skills you’ll be given every opportunity.  I’ve almost qualified for my ACA which is exciting. I want to progress as much as I can in the role I’m currently in. I know that KPMG will support me in any way they can to achieve my career goals.”

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