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Development Executive

Linden Smith

I raise funds for projects that help advance the chemical sciences.

0:16 A development executive is a person who comes to the Royal Society of Chemistry to raise funds for the projects. We have a variety of projects in science, education, industry and even internationally with the help of our members in order to deliver chemistry, sciences, to advance the chemical sciences essentially.

0:47 The role of the development executive is there is no ordinary day everyday is different. There is a lot of I would say networking and working with people internally and externally so in the fundraising group, or the development team we need to work and understand what the projects are in order that we can gain funds to facilitate those projects.

01:16 There’s always a variety of meetings, of reports to write, of proposals to put in and sometimes deadlines to meet as well. I studied chemistry at Strathclyde University and in that degree I also did a year in industry where I worked for GlaxoSmithKline. GlaxoWellcome as was and I also did a year in Montpellier in France where I studied chemistry in French of all things. So that took me to GlaxoSmithKline for my first full time role and in that company I did 2 I held 2 posts; one was in research and one was in manufacturing and then I left GSK to work in the voluntary sector for 4 years.

02:10 The need now is to be more be people-orientated and to be able to work in teams because even when I was in the lab I still had to interface with analytical departments, I had to interface with the pilot plants were projects and projects were scaled up. There’s a lot of working in teams. In this particular role I think communication is key. I think there has to be listening skills and planning and organising which has been true throughout my career path and from the very beginning in research as well I think chemists are very methodical and very organised in their approach and that is definitely needed in this role.

03:03 I think it’s juggling all the priorities that we feel we have and the development team are working well to divide the different areas according to our skills and that’s always challenging trying to keep the communication going internally but still deliver the projects externally so I think time management is a key tool.

03:35 It’s the diversity of this role is it’s really something that is exciting it really does mean that you can be energised in different ways from this role, the people that you interact with, seeing the project delivery is quite something in terms of our members do it really is inspiring to see what we can deliver as a Society with the help of our membership.

04:11 Delivering projects for me gives me the greatest sense of satisfaction I think when we achieve results as a team that really does help to get me out of bed in the morning.

“The diversity of this role is really something that is exciting it really does mean that you can be energised in different ways”

How did I get started?

I studied chemistry at Strathclyde University with a year in industry where I worked for GlaxoSmithKline. That took me to GlaxoSmithKline for my first full time roles where I worked in research and manufacturing and then I left GSK to work in the voluntary sector for 4 years before joining the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Skills used

Networking, communication, working in a team, listening, project management, time management, planning and organisation

“Delivering projects gives me the greatest sense of satisfaction especially when we achieve results as a team that really does help to get me out of bed in the morning. ”