What does your role entail?
I look after all my clients’ corporate wear needs from A to Z. Listening carefully to the brief, we commence with wardrobe design, sampling, cost and selection, and go through to manufacture and distribution. We make sure delivery performance surpasses expectations. Contract retention and organic growth are key, and I am always looking for better ways of working, cost saving initiatives, new ways to engage wearers and any other business stream within my clients’ organisations.
What is the best part of your job?
By far the best part of my job is the sheer variety of work! Account management is not just facilitating. At Incorporatewear, we are the ‘business owners’. It’s like running a whole business from your desk. Design, finance, marketing and sales are everyday events as well as web management, media and publishing. Who else gets to touch on these core business elements on a daily basis?
What is your greatest achievement?
This would have to be winning the Overall Business Manager Award at the 2010 Business Manager Awards, alongside my client. To be singled out in your industry for being at the ‘top of your field’ was just amazing, especially knowing the quality of competition out there.
It was a culmination of many years of personal hard work and effort with my client, to make their corporate wardrobe more than just a uniform. Incorporatewear works very hard to think outside the box to ensure our service offerings are unique, creating better ways of working, which challenge our clients and ourselves.
What is the biggest challenge in your job at the moment?
Offering clients good value for money is key. In this industry, there’s a lot of focus on the cost of garments, and while this is important, there are many ways to make savings other than stripping it out of the clothes.
My personal challenge is to try and make our clients embrace the potential in better ways of working. Wearers are the window to your business. A professional image – portrayed through good quality, well-designed clothes and happy staff – says a lot about your brand. Compared with the cost of refurbishment and advertising, it’s a snip!
What was the most exciting place your job has taken you to?
In one word – China! I took a tour of the factories we use there alongside others in Europe and elsewhere in the world. I was truly amazed at the size, cleanliness and professionalism. I toured onsite accommodation, recreation areas, canteens and food kiosks, where the workers seemed to be living very well.
We challenged the owners on their charity initiatives and found they go the extra mile on this too. We visited infant schools, deprived areas and were able to make a contribution to them on returning home. No trip to China would be complete (business or pleasure) unless one gets to visit the Great China Wall, not for the faint hearted but certainly one for the memory bank.
What is it like working with Jeff Banks?
It is a privilege to have worked closely with Jeff Banks for the last 11 years. Jeff is such a learned individual with ‘hands on’ experience in pretty much everything. He is happy to share his extensive business experience with those around him. Put an idea in front of Jeff, and the end result will far exceed any expectation.