We’re a friendly bunch at FOLK2FOLK and we love seeing the positive and life-changing impact finance can have. We get to know our customers so we thought you might like to know a bit about us too. Over to you Paul…
I was born in Luton at 30 weeks, clearly keen to get out and see the world! I grew up in rural Bedfordshire with a younger sister and three golden retrievers! When I was eight I developed a passion for playing golf and at 17 became the junior captain of my club. I was fortunate enough to get a hole-in-one while playing at a Captains Day as the junior captain, partnering with my dad and the senior captain and his son. A proud moment for me, but an expensive one for my dad!
I have a mixed business background. I started my working life in retail, working my way up from a Saturday job as a trolly boy at Sainsburys through their management training scheme to become deputy manager, running a team of about 70.
I was headhunted and had an opportunity to manage my own store with the mobile phone brand Orange. I enjoyed my time there and was involved in many projects but always felt I wanted to do more within a professional environment. After nearly six years with Orange, I decided I wanted to work in financial services.
I was offered an opportunity to work at Barclays as a Relationship Manager. It was a very intense learning curve, and 18 months in we had the credit crunch so the focus changed almost overnight. After more than five years with Barclays I was offered the opportunity to work in retail again but this time working with franchisees for the Boots Opticians retail brand. I was focused on supporting the franchisees maintain the Boots brand service standards while supporting them to increase customer loyalty and repeat business. This role enabled me to combine my passion to support SMEs while utilising my retail skills.
While working in that role, I came across Metro Bank who had an opportunity to set up the first Metro site outside of the M25. I like a challenge, and the model Metro followed was more akin to a retail service rather than the standard bank model. This resonated with me as it connected my financial services and retail experience. After Metro, I worked for Allica Bank and then a short stint at the State Bank of India, during which time I was able to grow my Real Estate and first charge lending skills which has equipped me well for my role at FOLK2FOLK.
I’m so pleased to be part of the FOLK2FOLK family and I have to say, I’ve never felt so welcomed into a team before.
When I came across FOLK2FOLK I was really inspired by their story so when a role came up I knew I needed to apply. Culture was a big drive for me, and I feel I have found a great fit with a company that shares the same values. I’m so pleased to be part of the FOLK2FOLK family and I have to say, I’ve never felt so welcomed into a team before. I’m really motivated to support SMEs with a brand I truly believe in, and proud to be focussing on East Anglia and the Southeast regions for FOLK2FOLK.
Outside of work I am a busy husband and dad to two beautiful girls. Sadly, the days of playing golf three times a week have gone, so instead I use my spare time taking an interest in aviation. I’ve flown small gliders, both open and closed canopy, and single engine Cessna’s. When I have more time, I would like to get my pilots licence and travel. I also have a creative side and enjoy making furniture. I turned my parent’s garage into a woodwork workshop a few years ago and have made several furniture items. Aside from that I am also the household chef, I love entertaining, and cooking for family and friends, normally with a large glass of something along the way!
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