It’s time to introduce another of our team members: this time, it’s Stéphanie Della Schiava’s turn to tell you little bit about herself. Stéphanie joined the Pouliquen sales team in 2005 and manages fresh vegetable sales to Southern Europe. Have you had the pleasure of speaking to her? Learn more about her career and her role at Pouliquen.
Stéphanie—five-nine, athletic, and with smiling eyes—is described by her colleagues as energetic, available and quick to respond. She can often be heard in the office speaking (loudly) in Italian and Spanish. And for good reason: after all, since she began working for Pouliquen 16 years ago, she’s been responsible for business development in southern Europe.
In love with Italy
When Stéphanie mentions Italy, her eyes light up and you can hear the excitement in her voice. How does she describe her feelings for this country? “It’s an extremely lively and dynamic country. It’s a bit of a cliché to say so, but Italian is a very warm language. In the fruit and vegetable sector, everyone uses the familiar tu, but even more so in Italy. And when you go there, there’s the atmosphere and the lifestyle. Italians take the time to enjoy life. I’m not drawn to one thing in particular about Italy: it’s the whole package. I feel good there. Everything is comfortable and… the food is so good! (laughs)”
And what about her last name, Della Schiava? She inherited it from her great-grandfather. Stéphanie grew up in the north of France, without any direct connection to Italy. She fell in love with the country when she discovered it for the first time during an Erasmus programme stay.
(Nearly) 17 years as a Pouliquen sales representative
Stéphanie first came to Pouliquen in 2005 to do an internship for her Business and Languages Master’s degree. And what was it that attracted her? Italy! In fact, Stéphanie was looking for an internship with a company that did business with that country. She enjoyed her experience and liked the company atmosphere, and so she stayed. Nowadays Stéphanie mainly works with our customers in the Mediterranean region.
Fresh vegetables and shallots: from sales to account management
Like all the members of our sales team, Stéphanie’s main role is to sell the fresh vegetables purchased at auction each morning, as well as the shallots packaged by Pouliquen. Her daily work consists of contacting potential customers, business development, and ensuring a balance between customer needs and product supply.
In the afternoons, Stéphanie carries out the administrative work created by the morning’s sales, including paperwork, logistics, order preparation, and order tracking and payment. She manages these tasks in close collaboration with the managers of other Pouliquen departments (quality, logistics, accounting, etc.). The second half of the day also provides opportunities to exchange information with other members of the sales team in order to identify market trends.
Fresh vegetable distribution: an appealing sector
When asked what she likes the most about her job as a fresh vegetable sales representative, Stéphanie replies: “No two days are alike. You might think that things are going to go a certain way because it’s cauliflower season, and then the day takes a completely different direction from the one you had imagined. We work with natural products. There are many different varieties of each vegetable. Also, depending on the weather, we might need to concentrate on one production area more than another. A few kilometres of distance can make all the difference in Brittany! Nothing is predictable.”
Unpredictable, constantly on the move: this could describe Stéphanie herself! If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of making her acquaintance, come and see her at the upcoming Fruit Logistica trade show in Berlin from 5th–7th April. She will welcome you to our stand in French, English, Spanish and (of course) Italian!