For the last 3 years I have presented ‘Sales Assistant of the Year Awards’ at the Dorchester in London and I can truthfully say it is a joy to be part of. Run by Convenience Store Magazine and sponsored by CocaCola Enterprises, Mars, P&G, and JTI They search the country for shop assistants that have turned their work from a job to a vocation. The 5 finalists who I met between them have made their respective stores the centre of community life, their customers are loyal because of the personal attention and friendship exuded when they walk through the door.
Delivering food when customers are ill, thinking of ways to improve the shop, encouraging new members of staff, raising money for local charities, running tasting sessions with homemade relishes is all in a day’s work for these Super Heroes of the shopping world. This year’s overall winner (who you can see in the picture) is David Tustain from Mace in Mundesley, Norfolk. David began life as a DJ in London, but when he discovered the joys of retail he was hooked and so were the customers or should I say his new ‘Audience’.