A Day in the Life

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Sophia Harvey, Company Director of Detox Trading

Sophie Harvey is the Company Director of Detox Trading and lives in Bristol.

My alarm goes off at

6.45 on a Monday (we start at 7.30am on Mondays), and anytime between 7am and 7.45am depending if I go the gym before work. I get into the office for 9am, it’s a 10 min walk from my house.

I’m responsible for

Everything. But I tend to do more Marketing (social media, blog, YouTube channel, email campaigns) Customer Services and Business and Product Development.

I got my job…

From my Dad, he started the company in 2007, by 2014 he was bursting at the seams and needed help. At the start of 2015 we moved the office from Totnes in Devon to Bristol where both my brother and I are based and we started working for the company. In June 2015 we incorporated (now a Ltd company) and my brother and I became Directors.

My typical day…

The morning typically consists of the practical side of running the company, so dealing with emails from customers and suppliers, packing up orders that have come in over the last day ready to be dispatched- glamorous! ordering stock and supplies, quoting wholesale customers for large orders, answering the phone (it rings a lot) or logging and handling incoming deliveries. Then the afternoon is more creative and could consist of anything from filming a video for our YouTube channel (I am the Presenter), going out for a meeting with our SEO Agency, working on new recipes for our range of super food blends, going home to make a raw cake or dessert to photograph for our social media, writing a blog, sourcing and testing new products to expand our range or sometimes it’s the less interesting things like doing a stock take or cleaning the office.

My most memorable work moment…

The time I was packing some carob powder (healthy alternative to chocolate) and the bag (with about 3 kg of carob in it) split…while I was holding it in the air and I got COMPLETELY covered head-to-toe in the powder. I had to be hovered down, the office smelt of it for weeks and my clothes were a brown, chocolaty mess.

The worst part of my job…

Having to work on a Sunday. Sometimes if we have had lots of orders over a weekend, we have to come in to work on a Sunday afternoon to clear the backlog so we can dispatch all the outstanding orders on the Monday.

 The best part of my job…

The huge variety of things I get to do. Being completely self-determined, if I am running late to work it doesn’t matter, I get to decide what and when things need doing and I don’t have to explain my decisions. I can rock up to work with no make-up on, messy hair and a hoodie on and that’s ok. It’s liberating being your own boss (and quite scary as your livelihood is completely dependent on your own hard work). I quite like that I am a woman in my 20’s (late 20’s sure) who owns her own business, doing it for the girls!

After work…

Usually the gym straight after work on a weekday, and then home to cook dinner (nice and healthy obviously), catch up on Bake Off, or maybe out to meet some friends for dinner or to a gig.

My Plan B: ….

I am also training to be a Naturopathic Nutritionist with the view of being able to provide advice to our customers, so once I am qualified I can also run my own private practice.  That would be my plan B!

Do you want to feature in the next edition? If you are a PA, Office Manager, Receptionist, HR Specialist or anything similar we want to hear from you!

Email: sophie@candcsearch.co.uk

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We need your pearls of wisdom!

We want to inspire the next generation to pursue a career as an Executive Assistant….

… And we need your help! 
We are putting together a download of ‘Top Tips from Top PA’s’ that gives useful tips on what makes an amazing Assistant!

Can you offer a tip? 
We will publish the top 50 and then have a prize draw in which the winner will win a Liberty Beauty Advent Calendar worth over £500!

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Congratulations to Joanna, Catherine, Yinka and Swathi all of whom won amazing prizes in our last draw!

Simply send your hints and tips to: sophie@candcsearch.co.uk to be in with a chance of winning!

Below are two great examples:

  • Choose Carefully: The best PA’s are often very different from the people they manage. They know that the relationship is a partnership and understand there’s a kind of Yin/Yan philosophy behind it. For example an extrovert, flamboyant executive might be better suited to a PA who is quieter and task focused whereas a quiet number crunching executive would be better suited to an extrovert PA who can deal with all the bits they would rather not. In fact it’s important from the start to explain your particular working style so that your boss understands clearly how you work and knows how you will help them to have more time to do the important things. For example, do you thrive when you are working for someone who gives clear guidelines and frameworks or do you love working independently and work best when there is plenty of variety?
  • Think Pink (I’m not talking fluffy here – I’m talking Financial Times): Learn about the world of business. PA’s don’t need to be experts but do need to have an understanding of the issues that concern their boss and therefore the people he/she deals with. Expand your references and learn about the financial markets, world events and political issues. Particularly, find out what a balance sheet is, what a profit and loss statement does. Find out how the stock market works and what influences the organisation’s share price. A good all round reading recommendation for this is “A Guide to Financial Markets” by Marc Levinson.

We cannot wait to receive your fabulous tips!

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Throughout November & December
If you refer your current company or a business that you know is looking for new talent and we go on to place with them, you will receive a £300 voucher (once the placed candidate has completed their 3 month probation).

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A Day in the Life

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Ed Chamberlain, Founder of Altus Partners and Co-Founder of C&C Search

Ed Chamberlain, 35, is co-founder of C&C Search and founder of Altus Partners. He lives in Henley with his wife and three young children.

My alarm goes off at…

5:30am – I have always been an early riser and I am pretty lively even at that time in the morning! In the middle of a rather challenging house move I still signed up for the London marathon and Tough Mudder – suffice it to say I have more energy than most!

I’m responsible for…

Running of both Altus Partners and C&C Search

I got my job…

By a dogged determination to grow and build a business and many years in recruitment prior to this, learning and perfecting my trade. This, along with my ambitious nature has resulted in two pretty special businesses. I am a glass-half -full kind of guy, I always try to see an opportunity even in the worst of circumstances.

My typical day…

I get up and out of the house at the crack of dawn and wind my way down the country lanes from Henley to Twyford by car. I then take the train to London, taking the opportunity to catch-up on the news across FT, Efinancial News, Bloomberg and City AM. I get into the office at 7:15 and I take the opportunity of momentary quiet to look over the day ahead and organise any admin that needs to be taken care of. From there on in it is spent in and out of the office in various client and candidate  meetings or on the phone, managing recruitment processes, internal or external work matters. I am often spotted running from meeting to meeting and tend to get through a fair few pairs of shoes as a result! Somehow I have also become saddled with IT trouble shooter in the office and my Co-Founder and sister Lucy is the main culprit! So in between everything else I am also under desks and in server rooms! None of this would be possible without a fantastic PA for support and Sophie does an incredible job at keeping me on the straight and narrow.

My most memorable work moment…

There have been lots of moments – when we moved from am office of 10 to an office of 20. Where we had our first dedicated meeting rooms (sometimes it’s the smaller things!). When I went from having one fantastic business to  two. When we found ourselves at  The House of Lords and then at Number 10. Starting our work experience programme with Tomorrow’s people. As you can see there isn’t just one moment. This is and will always be the most enjoyable yet challenging thing I’ve done. It requires 100% of you. We all forget to take time out to reflect on the great things we’ve achieved so far. It is important to have the discipline to reflect on the good and the not so good and use this as motivation to get bigger and better every day.

The worst part of my job…

The sacrifices; I have a fantastic wife (who I should tell you is super human) and three gorgeous children (all under 5) and I would love to see them more and its one of my goals for 2017. Owning and running a business also has a knock on impacts on socialising and in terms of trying to get any ‘me’ time – that’s pretty impossible right now (apart from the mad jogs from the city to Paddington).

I make sure I spend as much time on the weekend with the family as possible and the three children love getting involved in my other favourite past time – gardening (old before my time I know!).

The best part of my job…

Creating; I love the fact we have grown from no investment either equity or debt, into a company of 20 people with a great company culture and future ahead of ourselves. Every day I believe we can get and be better and creating that is the best thing about my job. Asides from that its humour – enjoying work is crucial and therefore we have a great team that loves to have fun and that enjoy my poor attempt at being a comedian.

After work…

I get back around 7:30/8, running twice a week from Bank to Paddington and then work from home until 10pm from Monday to Thursday. In the summer months, I’ll get out into the garden to unwind with a G&T and meander round working out what changes I’ll make next to the garden. Friday I try to get back by 6pm to see the children and then maybe friends in the evening.

My Plan B: ….

There has never been one. I am a firm believer that you cannot do anything well unless you are 100% committed. Having a plan B simply serves as a distraction to this.

Do you want to feature in the next edition? If you are a PA, Office Manager, Receptionist, HR Specialist or anything similar we want to hear from you!

Email: sophie@candcsearch.co.uk

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Annik, Talent Scout & Speaker Trainer

Annik, 30-something is a Speaker Trainer and Founder of PONY Express Speakers. She lives in Highbury with her husband and a little strawberry blonde cockapoo.

How I start my day…

Since we got our furry beast, Roxy (a cockapoo), mornings are so much more fun as she greets me with so much excitement as soon as I open my eyes. I never really get up at the same time, one of the perks when you are your own boss. After letting Roxy in the garden to bark at the squirrels I do 30 minutes of yoga. I used to start my day with stressing about all the things I have to get on with, but trust me, yoga is the better option.

I’m responsible for…

Making the world fall in LOVE with public speaking and training people to sell more authentically by charming those clients and investors… The psychology and neuroscience of nerves in relation to communication is fascinating and at PONY Express we love coming up with new methodologies to train people into playing a bigger game and being more of who they are.

How I got my job…

After developing a pretty good track-record of getting fired – not once but twice – I started my own business. Under the name of PONY Express, I was already running monthly events I just never thought I could make a living out of it but with the right business coach it all happened.

My typical day…

I love TRELLO – a project management software, so before getting into emails or Social Media I check in there and divide my day into 25 min slots to keep me focused. It’s a lot of event marketing & sales, connecting with speakers for our events, coming up with new content and finding ways to practically convert that into interactive exercises that not only push people out of their comfort zone but also engage their mind to change certain un-beneficial behaviors – like the crazy voices we buy into when it comes to speaking in public, you know the ‘why should they listen to me…’ – ‘I am clearly too boring…’ etc.

My most memorable work moment…

Whenever people contact me after trainings saying: ‘Oh my god, I feel like a different person when speaking and got so many inspiring comments.’ or ‘Thanks to PONY Express I finally started my own business and use speaking as a growth strategy.’ – I love that. I lived with this fear of speaking up in public for so many years and it’s great to see that the methodologies we developed over the years really work.

The worst part of my job…

Accounts. Whenever I hear people say ‘I am dyslexic’ I think to myself I have the same with numbers. They raise my blood pressure. Everything in life has positives & negatives. Running your own business is amazing because of the freedom it gives you to create whatever you want, but it’s also tough as you simply don’t leave the office with all your problems behind It’s always with you: at home, on holidays, socialising with friends turns into business networking. I am still working hard on finding balance and turning from being bright eyed & bushy tailed into a more grounded business woman, who understands her accounts.

The best part of my job…

Meeting so many inspiring people. CEO’s, mentors, investors, entrepreneurs, speaker agents etc. What I love the most is when people really let their guard down and are brutally honest about their hopes & fears. You can be with the most powerful CEO in the world and then they reveal things about themselves and you see that they really can be so vulnerable but totally owning their perceived ‘weaknesses’. So inspiring.

After work…

We often run events in the evenings as part of our 6-month Speaking Accelerator Programme but if I am not working I love reading Jackie Collin’s novels, watch Big Bang Theory or hang out with people who laugh a lot… Super relaxing.

My Plan B: 

Believe it or not but I love QVC and the visual language they use & selling they do on their channels, totally could work there, looking deeper into sales psychology and training presenters. Also, the more I work with the teams at C&C I realise how rewarding a career in recruitment can be. Lucy & Ed are growing an amazing business with strong values & ethics, might send them my CV :-)

 

Do you want to feature in the next edition? If you are a PA, Office Manager, Receptionist, HR Specialist or anything similar we want to hear from you!

Email: sophie@candcsearch.co.uk

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What’s Hot from C&C Search!

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