What better way to start the Christmas holiday and finish this series of Saturday Spotlight than with a very special EXCLUSIVE Customer Service chat with today’s guest! Please welcome to the Lady Janey sofa the Branch Manager of the NEW John Lewis & Partners store in Cheltenham, Martin Bundy.
There are sofas and there are John Lewis sofas so I couldn’t resist heading down to the store to have this week’s chats there instead! After a personal guided tour covering The Experience Desk which Martin described as ‘The starting point of the customer journey’ we moved on to explore the Discovery Room and then to find out more about the FABULOUS personal styling and shopping experiences. I cannot wait to try this out in the New Year especially when you can relax with a lovely glass of prosecco in one of the chic stylish personal styling rooms! Cin cin!
As branch manager, Martin leads a team of 300 Partners with the aim of delivering ultimately an excellent customer service experience. Along with a group of 4 managers, he oversees the overall day-to-day running of the store and all that entails including looking out for the welfare of his team. The opening of the new flagship John Lewis & Partners store sees the company setting future staffing standards placing the wellbeing and inclusion of its Partners as a top priority.
Martin’s first job was as a paperboy. Even at such a young age, he was very entrepreneurial and had a few little sidelines. Quite fitting really that he now is partnership with one of the greatest entrepreneurs of them all, the founder of John Lewis & Partners. Since starting out selling carpet and wood floorings, Martin has been with John Lewis for 18 years. He really enjoys variety so is pleased to have spent a third of his career in Head Office completing Project and Developmental work as well as working on the shop floor.
To relax, Martin likes spending quality family time with his wife and daughter Poppy, aged 6. He also enjoys Cheltenham life and all that it has to offer and his New Year resolution is to explore more of the Cotswolds. This Christmas the only thing on his wish list is ‘A couple of quality days’ with the family ‘After a very busy year!’ When I asked him about the best present he had ever received, he said ‘A ten year old me would probably say a Lego pirate ship.’ Perfect answer! Who doesn’t love a bit of Lego, even now?
Before moving on to chat more about the quality of the Customer Service experience at John Lewis & Partners, I asked Martin what he loves about Christmas to which his answer was ‘Everything! Just spending time with loved ones, twinkle lights, presents, lots of food and drink.’ Very aptly for this picture of festive bliss painted by Martin about Christmas, his favourite song is White Christmas. But can you guess what his favourite festive film might be? Leave your answer in the comments!
John Lewis & Partners aim to provide the very best of service and at Christmas time this is even more important in order to ensure customers have a fabulous festive experience. Martin says he is ‘The proudest man around for what we deliver’. He believes that good Customer Service involves really listening to customers and understanding their needs and encourages his team of partners to deliver an experience that make customers want to come back for the right reasons time and time again.
Martin really appreciates customer feedback and says ‘Some of your best ideas come from your customers’ and that his career has been built upon ‘Listening to people.’ I liked his choice of words because listening is a two way communication process. Companies may hear what their customers are saying but as to whether they are really listening is another question.
It has been really lovely to chat with Martin over a coffee at John Lewis & Partners Cheltenham for this Christmas Special Customer Service Chat and I really enjoyed my personal tour of the store. If you haven’t been already then although Father Christmas has been and gone this year, it’s now SALES time!
Merry Christmas everyone! See you in the New Year!
Lady Janey x