Posted: 23 April 2018
Ever wondered what it would be like to be a Manager for Storage King, making self storage simple? Our series "a day in the life" tells the story from the point of view of the men and women on the front lines every day. This week we chat to Carol Jacklin, Manager at Storage King in Cambridge.
Its 5am and off goes my alarm… I spring into action, my cross trainer awaits, a 30-minute workout to get the blood flowing then off to get ready for work. Uniform all ‘spick and span’, lunch prepared, it’s lift off!
My car journey to work is approximately 25 minutes and gives me good time to contemplate the day ahead and how exciting it will be if we can beat our daily target. Who will we meet today… a butcher… a baker or a candle stick maker… all equally important to us. I arrive at the store around 6.45am, I’m the ‘early bird’ of the crew. The birds are singing and the air is fresh and clean. It’s going to be a good day!
My first task is to fire up the computers and make sure all CCTV screens are on and working. Next on the list, get the reports off and prepare the daily figures to see where we are and where we need to go. Then off I go to walk my buildings, there are two of them totaling 62 500 sq. ft. We check the store is clean and tidy and free from any debris ready for the days customers. I know they like to see the store clean and tidy many of them mention it to us. It’s a real 'buzz' to keep it that way. It’s also very good exercise up and down the stairs and aisles. During the walk I check for any cleaning requirements, that all areas are safe and new customer units are ready and clean. After the store walk it’s back to the office to input the findings (such as vacates) and prepare for the busy day ahead. My cleaner arrives at 8.29am, you could set your clock by her and off she goes into the kitchen after a quick catch up to make the most important cuppa of the day… Aaaarrrr lovely!
At 9am the doors are open and the cavalry arrives (that’s the rest of the Cam Crew team) another busy day at Cambridge and admin duties to attend to, these include: lock checks, maintenance checks, debt collection calls, validating direct debits and card payments, stock checks and filling the store so it bursts with stock just wanting to be bought. It’s time to call the website enquiries and then the customers with live enquiries to see if they are ready to book, making sure of all the finer details are ironed out or if we can be of any assistance to make sure all their needs are met.
"It’s a great feeling when a customer leaves with a smile on their face."
It’s lunchtime before you know it and boy are we ready for it. I see happy faces around me waiting to see what home cooked dish I have brought in today. They love a bit of home cooked food. A well-deserved rest then a cuppa and back off we go. The phones are busy with new enquiries and existing customers popping in, dropping off filled shredding bags and having a chat, this is when you really get to understand your customers. We have a wide variety of customer making enquiries here in Cambridge, ranging from start-up businesses through to established companies seeking storage for excess stock, newlyweds looking to store goods for their new home, families and friends seeking storage as life happens. This is when a good cuppa can help and we are happy to sit and chat for a bit. It’s a great feeling when a customer leaves with a smile on their face. We always like to think it’s good to have the personal human touch in such an electronic world.
The best part of my day is sales! It’s ‘high fives’ all round for every sale, good to see my team enjoy what they do as much as me. We are all proud of our store, it’s clean, tidy and very lively, a great place to work. I’m not saying it’s easy, it is more challenging with no two days the same as no two people are the same.
I like taking ownership and am passionate about what I do. I like seeing my staff proud of their store and achievements. My Regional Manager is second to none and is always at hand if I need help or support. Head office allow us the autonomy to ‘get on with it’. They are supportive and take time to make sure our needs are met. After all, we are the guys and girls at the forefront of Storage King. Our managers have a lot of experience and that’s always good knowing they have been on the floor and understand the difficulties we can sometimes encounter. It makes a better team! I enjoy the challenge of targets and always strive to beat them with my team. That’s part of the ‘buzz’ factor of the job. I like being able to chat to other stores to see what they are up to and to see what is working well to see if we can adopt their method to better our performance.
Friday and Saturday are ‘share days’, where we email our results/activity between stores, it’s healthy competition and it can become quite funny with some of the comments we share but you will have to join the team to find out what happens here! Sharing information with other stores is valuable, it’s good to catch up on best practice and the little tricks that could improve our performance.
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