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Meet the Team

James Page – Marketing Manager

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Welcome back to the Meet the Team series. This week we talked to the head of our Marketing Department, James Page! James takes us through his life; from being in a heavy metal band growing up, to his consistent love for Bolton FC, including all the heartbreak that comes from being a supporter.

 

 

 

Tell us a bit about your Job role?

I’m the Marketing Manager which means I’m responsible for everything communications. I set out the marketing strategy, write the communication plans, manage the development of the corporate brand and the overall running of the department. We make sure that the perception of JH from people outside the company is the one that we want them to have, and that we send the right messages to people, at the right times, and in the right places to promote ourselves and our products.

How long have you been a part of the John Hogg team?

I started at John Hogg in the July 2017, so nearly 7 years. I started off as a sales executive for the Asia Pacific region, while doing a bit of marketing at the same time and went into marketing full time about a year later. I don’t miss doing sales, but the travel was brilliant.

What was your first job, and did you enjoy it?

My first proper job was working at Asda on the checkouts during the Christmas and summer holidays. To be honest, I hated it because I was just sat in one place all shift doing the same thing over and over – it was very boring. Eventually I got to be a supervisor and didn’t have to sit on the checkouts anymore, which I was buzzing about.

My first job related to my degree was as a Quality Control Analyst at AstraZeneca, where I worked for 3 months straight out of uni. I quickly realised that QC and lab work in general wasn’t for me for the same reasons as being on the checkouts, and I started at JH soon after.

Did you attend University? If so, what did you study?

I went to UCLAN in Preston studying a master’s in chemistry. It was a 4-year integrated course, which I graduated in 2016 with a 2:1. My dissertation was about how to use carbon nanotube and fat mixtures as a drug delivery system, aiming to make drug dosages more targetted and reduce side effects. The work was published in the Langmuir journal of the American Chemical Society and made me feel like a proper scientist.

If you could master one new skill instantly, what would it be?

With the direction that the world is going in, it would probably be how to write decent AI programs. It’s an exciting industry and it’d probably make me a billionaire.

Do you have a favourite sports team?

Bolton Wanderers! I’ve been going to the games since I was 18 months old because my dad has always been obsessed with them. I’ve had a season ticket since I was 10 years old in 2003, so I’ve seen the rise from the Championship, the glory days in the Premier League and the fall back down the leagues. We nearly went back up to the Championship again recently, but we bottled the playoff final at Wembley and I’m still not over it.

Do you have an accomplishment that you are proud of?

I would say there’s two that I’m very proud of. The first is getting a degree at the level I did, on a notoriously difficult course, which is something I’d wanted to do since I was about 13 or 14.

The second would be getting engaged to my fiancé Emma. As I’m sure she’d agree, that was some achievement.

Tell me something about you that most people wouldn’t know

Probably that my brother and I used to play in a few heavy metal and punk bands. When I was younger, I used to have the whole black hair, pierced lips and tattoos vibe going on, and we played with some decent bands back in the day. The biggest show we ever played was at the club academy in Manchester which holds about 700 people, and it’s still something we’re all proud of even though it was only about 25% full.

If you could travel to any place in the world, where would it be and why?

I’d love to go to the Maldives. Just the idea of relaxing on a hammock which looks over the clear blue ocean is something I’ve always wanted to do.

Which book or a movie has left a lasting impact on you and why?

I read this book a while ago called “Thinking Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman. It was all about the psychology of how humans make decisions and the different types of unconscious bias that you can be subjected to. It’s a really good book because it gives you an insight about why you do the things you do, with all the subconscious decision making going on that you have no idea about.

If you had to eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Emma always jokes about this, it would definitely be burgers… 90% of the time when we go to a restaurant, I will pretend to look through the whole menu and end up getting a burger.

What is your greatest fear?

I think a lot of people are like this, but I would say failure. It’s very easy to get imposter syndrome about things sometimes, so I try hard not to think about it too much.

Your GOAT music artist?

It would be either Blink 182 or Sum 41, mainly because those two bands got me into the style of music that I’m into today. I found out about Sum 41 from a TV advertisement on ITV or Channel 4 when I was 7, which is crazy to think about against how we find new music these days.

If you could have dinner with anyone, living or deceased, who would it be?

It would be either Einstein or Stephen Hawking. Purely because I’d love to ask them about how they came up with the ground-breaking science which they contributed to.

If you could describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be?

Down to earth. Or at least I try to be!

What’s the best thing about your job?

It would be having responsibility and influence over how we sell products, how we sell ourselves, and how we tell stories to our customers that get them interested in buying our products.

The other thing would be the people that work at JH. It really is a fantastic place to work in terms of support and teamwork, and I’ve made some good friends over the years.

What’s an important lesson you’ve learned while working at John Hogg?

I’ve learnt that you have to be patient when trying to change the way things work. I think that when you’re early on in your career you want to change the world, and it’s easy to get disappointed when things don’t go that way. Change is hard, and I’ve learnt that if you want to change things, it has to be a slow step-by-step process that happens over time.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give to new team members to succeed within our company culture?

The main thing is trying to get your head around the products and services we sell, by talking to as many people as you can. It can be really hard to understand at first; especially for new starters, so I would say utilizing the experience at John Hogg. We also put a lot of emphasis on teamwork and collaboration, so I would also say make sure you put yourself out there and get to know everyone.

Finally; In your opinion, what sets John Hogg apart as an employer?

Apart from the culture, I would say the freedom and support you get for doing things your own way. I’m always encouraged to try new ideas and take risks, which is something I’m very grateful for.

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