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Sara Diggle

Sarah heads up the Internal and External Reseller team and this year won awards for her contribution to businesses in the tech industry and supporting gender diversity in the workplace.

October this year will mark 20 years since I left my position as a full-time mum, alongside some part-time retail work, to take up a role in Brother UK’s technical support department. Since then, I’ve progressed through marketing and commercial focused roles, into the position I hold now as head of reseller sales. Here, I’m developing and implementing Brother UK’s reseller strategies with my excellent team of 10.

Thinking back to when I started, I was so motivated to build a career, which pushed me to take all the chances to learn more about the business. Volunteering to be an internal auditor really helped me to get a head start, and the experience gave me an insight into how different departments operated. It also gave me opportunities to network with other colleagues, to build solid relationships and ultimately to show how committed I was to making a difference at Brother UK. My progression was recognised last year when I was honoured with a We are the City Rising Star in Sales 2017 award, something which I’m really proud of.

It’s important for me to keep abreast of what is happening in the channel. So, getting away from my laptop to manage dealer groups or to meet with resellers at events is something I’m particularly keen on.

As I’ve moved up through my career, I’ve been motivated by seeing how my colleagues develop and grow too. A priority of mine is to support my team to be the next generation of managers in the business. It’s also important to me that my team enjoys their jobs, have a healthy work life balance and that they have the opportunities that I had to learn.

Q: What’s the best thing about your job?

A: The people and culture at Brother UK are what I enjoy most about my job. The company invests heavily in employee learning and development. This in turn creates a fun place to work where staff are motivated and have the means to deliver the best service for our customers.

Q: What would make your life easier at work?

A: Less traffic! I love how my job takes me all over the country to meet different people. But, busy roads sometimes delay me from doing what I enjoy most both in and out of work.

 

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Dannii Foster

Dannii heads up the Internal Reseller and CIV telesales team and is currently undertaking a Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship with the Open University.

Dannii has worked for Sara for the past six years and has been inspired and encouraged by her commitment to change through personal development.

Q: Have you always undertaken learning and development?

A: Only since joining Brother UK. Doing the Dale Carnegie course was a turning point for me and I realised that I could do more and could develop. That made me want to overcome any self-doubt and become the best version of me that I could be.

Q: How have you changed?

A: I think I’m much more confident. I also manage my team differently. Instead of telling I spend my time asking, working with each team member to help them overcome the problems they have. It’s a much more collaborative way of working, acting as a coach or mentor rather than as a boss. And I’m getting good grades in my studies – I’ve never really thought of myself as academic, in fact I didn’t get a maths qualification at school, so I’ve had to do that too, but I’ve discovered that I can do it, with hard work, determination and some sacrifices.

Q: Have you noticed a change in your team?

A: I think they’re more self-sufficient. They’ve taken on more responsibility and operate as a team more, even though they all have individual targets, they help each other and support each other more than ever. I think that’s partly because I have learned to let go, I feel more empowered and work more collaboratively, so this has passed onto the team, we’re all leading by example.

Q: What piece of advice would you give?

A: To take the opportunity to develop. I know from past experience that not many companies invest in training the way Brother UK do. People shouldn’t see it as a box ticking exercise, but should do something that they can be proud of, they should push themselves to achieve something or to change something. I’m proof that your past doesn’t define your future, and you can do anything if you put your mind, heart and soul into it.

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