This week Jenny Monroe talks to Patricia
McCullough, counter manager
McCullough, 24, from Lisburn is a Counter Manager for the
cosmetic brand Benefit based in the Boots Store at
Sprucefield. She was recently named regional consultant of
the year and last year her team gained the highest
percentage over target in the UK and Ireland and were
treated to a five day all expenses paid trip to San
Francisco where they met the sisters who own the company.
Patricia is currently on a year out from
her business management studies at the University of Ulster.
I get up about 6.45am, shower, put my
make-up on and have some breakfast. I try to be ready for
8am and leave to be in store for 8.30am.
I have a quick chat with the girls and
then start into my work.
There's always lots to do at the
beginning of my shift - I have to sort out the team and
individual targets, organise the tea breaks and lunch rota
and get all the preparation work out of the way as quickly
as I can.
I phone customers to remind them that
they have a make-up appointment and then I check the stock
levels and see what needs to be replenished. I work out what
I want to get out of the day and talk to the rest of the
11 am-3 or 4pm is the busiest part of my
day. My key role is to encourage as many customers over to
the counter to see the wonderful products we sell. I want to
let people know all about Benefit and show them the
'benefits' of using the products. All Benefit staff get
extensive training so I am able to give information and show
the customers how to use the items on sale.
I enjoy inviting a customer browsing in
store to come over and let me tell them about the cosmetics.
I show them the cosmetics and how to apply them properly.
Customer focus is very important - it's definitely all about
showing the products and not just selling. Some people will
come in to get advice about an item or how to accentuate
their features and I love being able to help them out. The
most common question I am asked is how to enhance eyes and
what colours are best with certain skin tones. Once the
customer sees the results they are very happy and if they
want to buy some of the make-up, I'll sort out the
transaction at the till. If somebody purchases one item I'll
offer them a free make-up lesson. The brand is very popular
as it is the only cosmetic range with an entire line of
products designed to disguise, hide, correct and camouflage,
even out and keep secret all of your flaws. Its like a best
friend that keeps your secrets. There's something for
everyone and that's why we have customers aged from 8 - 80!
Most girls want instant gratification and that's exactly
what you get with Benefit.
Later in the day I will be applying
make-up to people who maybe have school formals to go to or
brides-to-be who want to use our make-up on their big day. I
do freelance make-up work in my own time.
I normally take my lunch break from
12-1pm so that I am back on the floor during the busy lunch
hour. Then at 4pm I review the team sales to see how far we
are on target. I always try to motivate the staff too. I
finish at 6pm most evenings but I work late on a Thursday or
Friday evening. During the staff change over I let the team
know what is expected and then I draw up a plan of action
for the next day. I sort out any paper work which has to be
faxed to my area Manager Brenda Anderson who calls in store
once a week for a meeting.
I head home and have dinner - I love to
cook - and then chill out for a while. I spend a lot of my
time with my boyfriend and friends and family.
I really love my job and can't wait to go in