What was your first job? Working for Fine Fare as a graduate management trainee in its Shoppers Paradise store in Penge, South London.

Give us a quick rundown on your career to date. After starting in retail at Fine Fare I moved through sales and marketing roles before joining The New Covent Garden Soup Company as sales director. This was followed by five years with Lornamead before moving to the Enco Foods division of Grace Foods UK as commercial director.

How did you get where you are today? A passion for brands and the belief there are always opportunities out there.

What part has luck played in your career? I have always expected luck to play its part, but have found that generally one creates one's own opportunities.

What is the best decision you have made in your career? Accepting my first sales role in what was then Jacobs Suchard - brands impossible not to be passionate about.

What is the worst? Trying to prevent a hold-up at Shoppers Paradise in Bermondsey - armed only with a price gun.

Who do you most admire in the industry? William Kendall of The New Covent Garden Soup Company and Richard Reed of Innocent.

Do you have a mentor? My father, after many years in this business himself, has always been a voice of reason.

What is the most important piece of information you have been told? Talk less.

What is the most rewarding part of your job? The people.

What is the least rewarding part? Commuting.

If you could start your career again, what would you do differently? Be a pilot.

Do you think you'll always work in grocery? I'll always work where we make things, sell them, and enjoy doing it.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in the industry today? Be passionate about what you do and you'll have some fun, too.

What do you like doing when you are not working? Driving my Cortina 1600E and socialising.

Are you good at managing work/life balance? Not as good as I'd like.

Where do you hope to be in five years' time? Doing a bit better on that work/life balance.