Many people seem to think a career in retail just "happens". What led you to this point in your career?
Although I was born in England, I spent the first eight years of my life in the United States. My first job was at age six, selling Kool-Aid from the end of my driveway in Washington, DC! However, most of my education took place in the United Kingdom.
After doing a Business Studies degree at University, I chose to train as a Chartered Accountant, for the variety of experience and learning it would offer. While I was doing my training, I found I really enjoyed working with products and merchandise – things you can touch and feel and experience versus the less tangible issues you would deal with at, say, a bank.
I enjoy the fast paced, dynamic, changing environment that retail brings. It's the kind of business where our performance is influenced by how well we put together our strategies and plans, and how well informed and engaged our Employees are. It's very fast paced and I love that.
I came to Canada in 1994 for another retail organization. After a few years the family and I decided we wanted to make Canada our home. It was at that stage that I joined Toys"R"Us.
My real passion is to lay out clear strategies and bring people together to work together towards those common goals. The opportunity to become President at Toys"R"Us and Babies"R"Us enabled me to take on that honour for our whole Company. I was excited to do that.