Andrew Mills - By seeing other people and inspiring other people that inspires you to be a better individual

Andrew Mills - By seeing other people and inspiring other people that inspires you to be a better individual
Andrew Mills:Marketing Director at Boxer Superstores

ANDREW MILLS, the marketing director at Boxer Superstores, says that his job is to ensure that he is inspiring his staff and others throughout the business, while implementing marketing strategies that retain and attract shoppers.

Mills matriculated at Kearsney College and then went on to complete a diploma in marketing. Following this qualification, Mills entered the direct sales environment and worked his way up to sales manager. This was a position that he thoroughly enjoyed as he said he was able to inspire and drive his staff. 

After two years in that position, Mills joined a multinational business in FMCG and he then joined Boxer in the retail industry, where he has been for two decades.

He says, "I remember coming into the Boxer reception area, where were a whole lot of people sitting and we were literally lined up like sardines. I was sitting amongst a very mature generation of fantastic candidates and eventually got my chance to go and sit with the then merchandise director Eugene Stoop. I then described my journey up to that point."

He explained further that Stoop then asked him the the question: "If I was given the opportunity to look after the Boxer brand what would I do?" Mills said that he gave a whole shopping list of things that he believed that he would be able to inject into the Boxer business.

"When I finished the interview, I left feeling positive and later that day I received a call from Eugene saying I was hired. I then joined Boxer and 22 years later I have never looked back." He says that the points that he raised in that interview were implemented just three short years later and that he made good on his commitments to the business.

Mills describes his job, "I am the brand custodianfor the Boxer company, I put together and coordinate the national marketing activities for the greater Boxer business across the different divisions. I also implement marketing strategies that best engage our shoppers and potential new shoppers into our Boxer stores. We are based here in KwaZulu-Natal, we have a business which has close to 250 stores and we've traded for over 40 years, it's a fantastic environment to be in."

He says that the management team does not pigeon hole themselves into a particular area of responsibility and that their years of experience mean that they are able to move across all the different portfolios to inject their understanding.

"We are a very close-knit unit and the fantastic thing about working for this company and within the Pick n Pay Group is that we utilise our time to inspire, groom and coach others through the company. This company has been a business that really looks at the individual regardless of race, gender or creed, it's about the person and what they are capable of. It's up to us to make sure that we can groom the generations that will follow through to make sure they will take this business into the next few generations with successful healthy leadership."

For Mills, one day is never the same as the next which he says is fantastic. "The wonderful thing about Boxer is that there's always a buzz and it's fast paced." He explained that he is the first to come in, in the morning and the last to leave and he travels a lot both locally and internationally.

"There is always something happening. You've got to have fun, even if there are deadline pressures or you have to do massive distance or work long hours. You've got to enjoy what you are doing."

He says that he is blessed to work alongside some fantastic individuals within his team. Mills added that every single person in his particular department really goes out of the way to excel and perform as well as share their energy with him.

Mills concluded, "It's about meeting and inspiring people and getting the opportunity to coach others and groom others. Sometimes just a word or a sentence said to somebody else can inspire them to do their best. By seeing other people and inspiring other people that inspires you to be a better individual, that's a fantastic part of the job within the industry that I operate in."

He has always had a passion for marketing and sales and positively influencing other people.

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