Meet the Team: Mandy Kerley
26th May 2023
Next up in our ‘Meet the Team’ series is Mandy Kerley, Chief Operating Officer.
Tell us about your role at Trickle?
I am Trickle’s Chief Operating Officer, which involves overseeing the everyday running of the business and working closely with the team leads to deliver strategy and goals, and support their people.
I wasn’t always in this role though; I started my life at Trickle in the Business Development team for just under a year before joining the Customer Wellbeing Team, from where I moved to my current role. It’s been a helpful progression. Understanding the real-life needs of customers, the challenges they face day to day and practical examples of how Trickle can be transformative, means that as a business we can be collectively focused on what’s important – making a difference for our customers.
What’s your favourite part of being part of the Trickle team?
The culture. In my 25 years of working, I have never experienced such a supportive, positive, nurturing culture like we have at Trickle, it can be rare in any sector. Paul is very much a people-first CEO, he genuinely cares about employees and customers, and that has set the tone. We use Trickle ourselves, so it’s a psychologically safe workplace, and there is healthy communication and collaboration. I genuinely look forward to coming to work.
What was your first ever job?
I couldn’t wait to start work and earn my own money, so in the weeks before my 16th birthday I printed lots of CVs and handed them into restaurants and shops, introducing myself to the managers. I was soon offered a weekend job as a waitress, and I was terrible at it! I was nervous, kept spilling things and lasted one weekend before deciding hospitality was not for me. I was then offered a job in a clothing store, which I loved as I got to chat to the customers, build relationships and suggest outfits that they might like. It was a good first lesson in accepting that failure is part of the process, and a valuable opportunity to learn how important building relationships with colleagues and clients is to success.
How would you describe yourself in one word – and why?
I would probably go with ‘optimistic’. I always assume there is a solution to any problem, and that a challenge is only ever a temporary obstacle. If the company has a goal, I believe that it can be achieved even when it seems impossible – and this mindset has worked out very well for me so far!
Micro failures along the way are fine as long as you stay focused on the long game – a bit like losing a match, but still winning the league.
What is your favourite place in the world and why?
When I was travelling 20 years ago, we came across a tiny island in Malaysia, and decided to stay for a few months because it was just so beautiful with clear blue sea and white sand and staying in a tiny hut with trees all around. It was magical. Until recently, I’d have said my favourite place was there. Now on reflection, sometimes I can be sitting in my own garden when the kids are playing, where the people I love are having a nice time and are feeling relaxed, and feel like it’s the best place in the world. I think the pandemic and lockdown had a positive impact on me in that way, realising that there is beauty in wherever you are, and to have gratitude for the people around you and finding joy in day to day experiences.
Films or books? And what is your favourite?
A bit of both, I love nostalgic movies with great soundtracks, like True Romance from the 90’s with that brilliant Baz Luhrmann track. But I also love books, especially the ritual of selecting one at a bookstore and bringing it home. My favourite is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, which is a fable about finding purpose and never giving up. It’s a beautiful story that has had a big impact on my life.
Who would you most like to switch places with for a day?
Anyone who knows me will know that I am a huge fan of Michelle Obama. I often think ‘what would Michelle do’ in any given situation, as she is so principled and inspiring. Having three daughters I like to champion the intelligent and outspoken female role models of the world. So, I would love to spend a day in her shoes, meeting the amazing people she meets and having some of the interesting conversations she has.
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