What was your first-ever job? I worked in a butchers while I was at school Give us a quick run-down on your career to date. After I finished college I was a trainee manager at Sainsbury's and then progressed to senior manager of a department. I left Sainsbury's to get into buying and joined Circle K where I became director of buying for Alldays in 2001. It was sold to the Co-operative Group two years later so I moved to BP as trading director. How did you get where you are today? Hard work and learning from everyone I have worked for - sometimes copying what they did, adapting it or even ignoring it. Has your career followed a logical path? I think so. I have worked in growth environments, financially challenging ones and more recently in a business that wants to become a great retailer. What is the best decision you have made in your career and why? I learnt a lot at Sainsbury's, but it was the right time to move on into a more strategic decision-making role. Do you have a mentor and how have they helped you in your career? Yes. I owe a lot to David Cheyne, who is now at Somerfield. He had faith in me at Alldays. Prior to that, Mike Godwin (now at Smile) who gave me support in my early years. What is the most important piece of information you have ever been told? Make sure you believe in yourself. If you could change one thing in the grocery industry what would it be? Simplify the administration around products we are all weighed down with. What is the most rewarding part of your job? Delivering something new and inspiring to the customer. What is the least rewarding part? Bureaucracy. If you could start your career again, what would you do differently and why? Believed in myself earlier in my career. What advice would you give to someone starting out? Be prepared for never-ending change and challenges. What do you like doing when you are not working? Spending time with my family, and playing and following sport. Where do you hope to be in five years time? I don't know but happy and invigorated by whatever I am doing I hope.