It all started when…

Born, 1991

Slough. The oldest of three children – one brother, one sister and two dogs. I love my family.

Grew up pre internet, pre mobile phones. Social networking was knocking on my friends’ door and causing mischief in our road. 

Got a paperboy job, sucked at it! Stuck at it.

Rock music was always on at home. At school I learnt to play the drums – I wanted to become a rockstar, (spoiler alert) I didn’t. I got to play in front of Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), cool! Joined a band called “rocktational” NOT COOL. Got kicked out of the band for not being cool enough, cried. Dusted myself off joined another band. Organised a festival – called it Dezfest, raised lots of money for charity.

I got a job at my local Waitrose. Meat and Fish Counter. Loved it. Learnt: to sell; to look after customers; to know what good looked like; how to gut fish! I smelt of fish.

Became a foodie, put on weight. Love cooking. Love eating. Pizzas. Burgers. Roast Dinners. Curry. I love Curry. A curry with my Grandad is my favourite thing. 

Moved to Nottingham – went to Uni, Business & HR. Grew up. Partied. Studied. Partied some more. Studied even more. All nighters. Study, study, study.

Did a placement year in HR. Restructured over 300 Waitrose shops. Reduced redundancy risk from 341 people to just two, target was 100.

Graduated, got a 2:1. One of eight to get on the Waitrose Leadership Graduate Scheme out of thousands of applicants. 

Various management positions in Waitrose shops, Oxfordshire, North London, Bath, Sussex. Led teams from 5 through to 150 people. Achieved lots. Had fun. 

Moved to Bath.

Got a girlfriend, Sally. She is still with me, don’t know how, she’s great!

Got a job in the Waitrose property team. Developed an investment plan. Completely rewrote the rules for investing and refurbishing shops. It’s now a fundamental to the Waitrose strategy.  

Moved to Brighton.

Coolest place I’ve lived in. So many places to eat at. Currently eating my way round Brighton’s restaurant scene.

Became a Branch Manager in Sussex. Restructured the shop’s management structure, changed the operating model. Delivered sales and profit growth in a declining grocery market.

Tried to grow a beard.

Took a role as the retail lead for a transformational change project. A new merchandising system ripping out everything Waitrose does with stock and starting again. Developing new processes for shops and supply chain. Planning for all the changes. Ultimately making sure it all works!

Still trying to grow a beard.

Moved to Windsor.

Want to get a dog. Join a band. Grow a beard. Joined CrossFit, trying to work off all that food from Brighton.

It hurts, a lot!

Currently developing the retail change and strategy plans – be that finding new ways to do things, save us money, where to open stores, where to close stores, or how to improve the customer experience for our online customers.

The story continues…