Life on The Road is My First Choice : Blog #7

22 August 2017

Martin Allen Queen

Well it’s been almost four years since I started here at First Choice. In such a relatively short space of time we have seen some amazing changes that will no doubt propel us all towards a successful and productive future with the company.

My own journey within this industry of ours started over 30 years ago as a young and eager 22-year-old. After only 10 Months with Blue Seal catering I was sent for five weeks’ factory training in New Zealand at the company’s Christchurch facility. From that moment on I was hooked on the industry. Unfortunately, in later years, the serious earthquakes that took place around six years ago changed the face of Christchurch forever. No doubt if I am ever lucky enough to go back it will be a far different place to the one I fondly remember.

I suppose looking back, one of the biggest attractions for me has been the constant interaction with people from within the industry. I’m in no doubt that technology and social media have very much been absorbed into our everyday working lives but I still feel that the face-to-face contact is, and will be for many years to come, a very important part of the sales and business development process within the foodservice equipment industry.

To have travelled within my career to places such as Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and USA, I have to say I feel very privileged to have done so. Going back to see people I have met so many interesting and fascinating characters with some becoming lifelong friends and this for me is a privilege in itself.

Martin Allen Mandy

Along the way I have also met and been in the company of many celebrity chefs and once, during an event called the New Zealand culinary exchange, even spent some time discussing the event with Princess Anne. She also asked me how many times I had travelled to New Zealand and upon receiving my answer replied ‘wow, that’s twice as many times as me!’

So having spent most of my working life within the external sales environment what does a normal day consist of? Well for me I have always been an early bird, I like to be making my first appointment ready to make the most of the day, this also gives me some breathing space for checking all the relevant facts and figures before I sit down and have a meeting with someone.

The external role also requires a solid relationship with the internal team, the sum of the parts makes for a the successful interaction with customer and I feel at First Choice that’s exactly what we have and something I don’t take for granted and appreciate very much. When travelling these days, it’s very much a case of taking the rough with the smooth, when its good it’s good but when it all goes wrong the radio is your best friend.

Ultimately the external sales efforts are the face of the company, all the hard work put together by the internal teams and when the sum of the parts works well together it is much easier to sell the package and that’s what I personally try to do.
Once I’m away from work the most important things in my life are my wife Mandy and my two daughters, Cat & Rhian - also not forgetting my pet dog Sid! And when time allows I also like to get out on the banks of my local pond or river to do a bit of fishing.

by Martin Allen

Martin Allen Fish

Published : 22 August 2017 14:40