Inside parcelLab: Conor im Job-Interview
Conor McGrath - Head of Clients UK and Nordics
Name: Conor McGrath
Age: coughing fit 56
Position at parcelLab: UK MD, Head of Clients UK and Nordics
Origin: Born in the USA. U-S-A! U-S-A!
1. Briefly tell us what your usual working day at parcelLab is like?
I wait for the Millennials to wake up and stroll into the office. Then we talk about Love Island and the plans for the weekend. After that, we finally make some calls and try to help retailers improve their customer experience.
2. What's your professional background like?
I went into sales right out of college and was fortunate to have excellent managers who coached me a lot. I moved to California in the 90s and sold technology to enterprise customers for most of my career.
3. What do you like most about parcelLab and your job?
Our parcelLab UK team is pretty cool. Different backgrounds, different skills, different personalities. The team culture has changed into something over time, but I would say proud, supportive, fun.
4. What do you think makes parcelLab unique?
We have room for just about every type of person on our team. It's like a bad pub joke: we have an Italian, a Frenchman, an English rose, an Egyptian, a Yankee, a German, a Swede, a dancing bear, a Lithuanian, an archaeologist, a hacker, and not one but two guys from Hull (English city). It's a motley crew - and that's a good thing!
It's also a brand new and innovative industry. Shipping communication (post-purchase communication) is only really well mastered by a handful of online retailers. So we think there's a lot of potential for our team and our company.
5. What are the characteristics of the perfect parcelLab applicant?
They should strive for professional development and be open to being coached. For example, we are happy to take people with less than two years of work experience and turn them into real professionals within a few months.
People who know themselves and can bring us added value are also welcome. We are a young company, we don't know everything, so we need all kinds of new people to be successful.
6. How would you describe the working atmosphere at parcelLab?
Chilled is not quite right, although we are really chilled. And not relaxed either, although we don't have any stress. I think it might be 'quietly determined' - if you can say it that way? We all know our goals, our part to play in achieving them - and that's what we work on together every day! Teamwork is very important to us.
7. What has been your favorite moment at parcelLab so far? And why?
Our Christmas parties are pretty epic. The fact that we won one of the three biggest retailers in Europe was a big deal. It showed us that we can win anyone as a customer, anywhere in the world.
8. What qualities and strengths have you been able to add during your time at parcelLab?
I had to scale back my sales strategy several notches. I'm trained in classic US sales techniques, which can be very brash when in doubt. So it's been a personal challenge to be a little less business-oriented and a little more friendly, but I'm getting there. Learning to trust other people isn't that easy either, but you have to do it in our business and in our current growth phase.
9. What challenges have you already had to face during your time at parcelLab and how did you overcome them?
Not asking too many direct budget questions right away! But with the coaching I've received from the management team, I've realized that it's possible to do it indirectly and still achieve a similar result. Tobi (our CEO) wants us to be the nice guys (which of course we really are!!) who finish first, that's the team mantra.
10. What makes London so attractive to you?
I'm lucky enough to have lived in San Fran, New York and London - all great cities. For me, London comes first. You can't beat its culture, its history, the diversity of entertainment and the diversity of people. Add to that its proximity to Scotland and the French Alps - two of my favorite places.
11. How would you spend your perfect weekend?
According to my social media profile: Love food, dancing, stretching, wine, discussion, travel - and preferably all in one night.
12. What three terms would your colleagues use to describe you?
You should ask them that! I guess it could be this, "Know your customers".
Join us in creating an outstanding customer experience. We look forward to meeting you!
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