Career Paths: Ansel Diama’s cross-functional Molson Coors journey

Right out of college, Ansel Diama’s joined Molson Coors sales management program in the Northeast region. But soon after when the pandemic hit, he and other SMPs were asked to provide assistance to other areas of the business. Ansel took the opportunity to temporarily support the customer service department as a Customer Service Analyst. By the end of the assignment, Ansel was eager to learn more and expand his skills; he applied for a permanent position in customer service, and is now supporting the Great Lakes Region.

We asked him about the cross-functional move and how it impacted his career.

How has working across functions helped you build your skillset?

As an SMP, I never put any thought into how the liquid I sold made its way from the brewery to the bar counter of my accounts. Since joining the Customer Service team, my skillsets have been expanded by being exposed to the complex supply chain side of the business. Professional growth is alive and well in the role as I learn and work with the smartest people that I know who are willing to teach, coach and mentor.

What skills served you best as you moved across functions?

What helped me the most when moving across functions is my willingness to learn and acceptance of making mistakes. Sales and Supply Chain are two completely different worlds with different jargon, computer programs and systems. The transition was made easier through the support from my fellow CS team members who coached and helped me establish a foundation of knowledge in the role.

Due to the nature of the role, I am constantly learning something new every day. It is reassuring to know that my team is always willing to help me work through problems that I am unable to solve.

How did your passions and interests inspire you to move across functions?

When the ask was presented to SMPs to support a high-priority side of the business due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I knew that I had to step up and provide my assistance where it was needed.

I didn’t completely understand just how important customer service was until I saw the impact of supply chain disruptions due to the pandemic. I am glad to have made the move as I have seen Molson Coors respond to inventory challenges to now being in the healthiest spot it has been in decades.

Why are cross-functional/horizontal moves equally as important and impactful as vertical moves?

What is great about Molson Coors is that career growth within the company is not exclusive to the department that you are currently in.

I believe cross-functional/horizontal moves are as important as vertical moves because of the broad range of experience that is awarded to you by taking the leap into a different department. By taking the leap, you may discover new interests, passions and career paths that would not have been made possible through vertical moves.

Cross-functional and diverse experiences are critical in building the next generation of company leaders. I believe any company would value a candidate with diverse experience. This is made clear within Molson Coors through our rotational programs that are aimed at building top talent by working cross functionally (Ex. Finance & CSE Development Program).

What advice would you give other people looking to move roles across functions?

Have fun and take joy in making a change! There’s no better feeling than being completely new into a role and slowly seeing yourself progress as you become more knowledgeable and impactful in the position.