Career Stories
November 16, 2022

Everyone starts somewhere, and at Co-op we believe every team member should have the opportunity to grow to their full potential. We'd love to highlight some of our team members that have built a career with Pembina West Co-op. These team members are vital parts of our organization and success stories and we appreciate the work, time, and dedication to Pembina West they have shown.

Brett Schultz

"I started with Pembina West Coop November 16th, 2015 as a service desk clerk in the Home Centre with goals of becoming a Home Centre manager. Before my 30 day probation was finished I was promoted to a supervisor position. In approximately February of 2016, I applied for the lumber manager position and attained the position of customer service manager. In September of 2018 the role for the lumber manager position became open, and upon applying was awarded this position. I have now been with Pembina West Coop for close to seven years. Pembina West Coop, Federated Coop and the CRS gave me the opportunity to acquire a massive amount of training. Full advanced estimating, manager group training, basic retailing in hardware and lumber retailing. What also impresses me is the abundant of life skill courses the organizations offer; for example The Power Of Attitude, Increasing Personal Effectiveness, Achieving Balance and Mental Health First Aid just to name a few.

I truly believe that a person has the ability to do whatever they choose by joining these organizations. There are many examples of people starting as part time help in a grocery store becoming division managers leading multiple stores. Hopefully you have seen the billboards or posters where we celebrate the schooling achievements of students working for us, well some of these people go on to be engineers, lawyers maybe teachers or market analysts and some of these will never leave our organizations until they retire. Is there chance for advancement? You bet there is.
Organizations that value people, give amazing amounts to charities including their local communities, are member driven and care about the environment are a joy to work in."

Brittany Schuurman

"I joined Pembina West Co-op in September of 2018 as an Administrative Clerk responsible for the reception desk, reviewing daily sales data, and providing maternity coverage for accounts payable. When I joined the Co-op, I was looking for the stability of a regular schedule and predictable paycheque after a few years of entrepreneurship. I was excited to join an organization that I could see cared about the community; from the level of service they provide in the stores, to their presence in the community through events and donations. I could see by the investment in new facilities that it was an organization with a focus on the future, a place that I could grow. I wasn’t exactly sure where I would find my place, but I trusted that the potential was there.

My role continually evolved, giving new opportunities to learn about the Co-op model of business and how our retail operates, to express my various skills and explore my interests. After some time, I was also handling member equity, preparing board reports, and assisting the Marketing Manager with some smaller creative projects. I could clearly see that the marketing role would be a great fit for my skills, and a role that I would be passionate about learning and mastering. When the role became vacant I had demonstrated my passion and skill enough to be given the opportunity as a Member Relations and Media Coordinator, only a year and a half into my role on the Co-op administration team.

Before long, my contributions were recognized with a promotion to Marketing and Member Relations Manager in September of 2020, and a subsequent title change to Director of Marketing and Member Relations in June of 2021. I continue to be astounded that my career progressed from a newly hired receptionist to a member of the senior leadership team in a new career path in only two years. I am immensely grateful for the trust that the Co-op has shown in me and the opportunities that I have been provided. I am fortunate to have found a role that challenges me to grow every day, and gives me the chance to pursue and use so many of my different skills and interests.

I believe that our Co-op and the entire Co-op system provides a very unique opportunity for career development because of the fact that the vast majority of positions are filled from within. Hiring managers know their applicants and assess for a great fit for the team and based on your ability to deliver, rather than competing with applicants based on specific education and experience requirements. When you consider the wide range of products and services, the possibilities are practically incomparable. There is room to grow up, as is seen in many of our leaders, but it is also truly a unique opportunity to explore different paths to find your best fit."