It is your first day on the job today? It is, yes! Twenty-eight years at Asda, but my first day at this store – I am still going to take the glory! There is no better accolade than having your photo in The Grocer. But it is fantastic for the store – from what I have seen, it has some great colleagues. We have done exceptionally well on our internal ‘Happy to Help’ and ‘Queue’ audits – we got 100% on both. And I think that has been backed up by this win. 

Have you had a chance to check out the local competition? There is a Sainsbury’s just opposite – I can look out of the window and see it. I’m going to take a look around tomorrow. In terms of the competition it gives us, I think Asda offers a better range across general merchandise and clothing – that is a massive point of difference. I think from a food perspective it is about offering the best availability and quality that we can, plus great service. They are the things I will be looking to drive. I don’t want to focus on other stores, I want to make our store the best in town. 

And how will you go about doing that? We are driving three areas really hard at the moment: Chosen By You, Back to School at George and the Asda Price Guarantee. Chosen By You is right across the store and is selling well. We have seen a sales uplift of at least 5%. With Back to School we want to let people know we have pretty much everything, at the best value but also great quality. The holidays have just started, so we want to get it out there so people can see the offer quickly and know it’s there when they come to shop. 

You mentioned the Asda Price Guarantee – the controversy over it seems to have died down. Why do you think that might be? The fact is that our customers are getting great value. I don’t think anyone uses it enough to check how much they are saving. As for the controversy, I think if the competition could have found a reason why it is not a robust price guarantee they would have highlighted that. If they could have disproved it they would have. I think that is why it has died down. 

How do you plan to make a difference in the store? I think it’s about being able to relate to colleagues and customers. I talk to them about the store, the environment they work and shop in, and listen to what they say. And I enjoy work. If you enjoy work, when customers enter the store they feel the warmth. They know they will get great service because they can feel the colleagues enjoying it.