John has worked at MGF for over 20 years, having originally joined the Hire Desk team in 2001 he moved into his current role 6 years ago becoming part of the Astley sales team covering both safety and shoring technical sales. Here is what he had to say about his time at MGF and what he has learnt about the industry.
Tell us a bit about your role
Based in Astley, my role covers two areas, firstly managing safety sales which involves building relationships with new and existing customers across the whole of the North West, developing their awareness of our wide range of safety products including confined space equipment, flood defence, personal protective equipment, pipe and manhole handling equipment and working at height.
Secondly and most recently I have been providing support to the guys in the technical sales team which involves dealing with customer enquiries, carrying out site visits and working with our in-house teams to create designs and quotations.
What is it that you enjoy about it the most?
I am really enjoying how this role allows me to incorporate my knowledge about our products and services with the added bonus of being able to go out and about, visiting sites and meeting customers. I also enjoy working closely with the sales team, we have a great working relationship with each other and they’ve taught me a lot.
What was it that made you want to follow a career in Technical Sales?
After 15 years of working on the hire desk I felt I had given everything I could to the role, I was ready to try something new and push myself further within my career. Taking on the management of safety sales initially gave me more of an insight into how the sales teams work at MGF and allowed me to start building relationships with our customers. Whilst working in this role I was also asked to support the Astley sales team with the shoring side of the business, something I was really keen to get involved in.
Describe your background and how you got into the industry
I began my career in sales over 20 years ago working in Export Sales for a local Bolt & Nut Manufacturer, I did really enjoy working in this role and I had some good times with the team.
I joined MGF in 2001 to work on the Astley hire desk and after 15 years felt I has gained an extensive knowledge of both MGF’s products and the industry. When an opportunity became available to work in safety sales, covering the North West predominantly but supporting the business nationwide I thought it would be a great opportunity for me to learn more about different areas of the business as well as working more closely with some of our customers.
What do you find to be the most interesting projects to work on?
Being able to see how a project runs from start to finish in my eyes is the most interesting part. I am still relatively new to the sales role and actually being able to see enquiries come in, dealing with customers on a regular basis, working with our engineering, hire desk and transport teams offers real variety to the role.
One job in particular that stands out for me was when we supplied 50 trench boxes to a wind farm in Neston to allow for the safe laying of cabling required, I was able to visit site which is always an added bonus as you get to see our kit, watch it be installed whilst also checking in on the customer to ensure everything runs smoothly.
What do you appreciate about having a strong working relationship with customers and how that benefits your job?
Working in a technical sales role has really opened my eyes to the different elements involved and how as a business we work so collaboratively to meet out customers needs. Its really important to have regular communication with your customers whether its over the phone or face to face to ensure each stage of the process from initial enquiry to collection of kit runs smoothly as this all helps to develop great long term relationships.