Magazine article Management Today

Tim How: If I Had to Start Again

Magazine article Management Today

Tim How: If I Had to Start Again

Article excerpt

I'd go back into retail, unquestionably. My father was the MD of Colman's in Norwich, and from my teenage years I knew I'd work in commerce too.

Working with wine makes everything fun, but it's not why I went into this business. I like the constant buzz of retail - you're only ever as good as yesterday's takings. And I love the customer contact. I couldn't run a widget business.

I studied natural sciences at Cambridge, specialising in metallurgy. I never used it directly, but it did allow me to spend a long vacation on a copper mine in Zambia - which promptly taught me that I didn't want to spend my life on a copper mine in Zambia.

I took a graduate role at Rugby Cement, then moved to a division of Dunlop that made fire-fighting equipment. I was working in a Yorkshire village, a long way from the action. I wanted to learn about customer-facing business, so took an MBA at the London Business School This bred opportunity. I joined Polaroid, marketing instant cameras. It was a major consumer brand, and very exciting. …

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