Travelling light

Having been at Kier for nearly two years I'm now into a bit of a rhythm with the seasonal working calendar and have found it to go something like this: Keeping our heads down in the winter and spring to really embed some working practices and to introduce some new tools into the business, then in summer and Autumn we get out and about as much as possible to share what we've been doing and to take advantage of the lighter evenings and (mostly) nicer weather.

I'm now the master of packing an overnight bag
Being in the central team it is our responsibility to remain at the forefront of marketing and to offer guidance and support where we can. We also get involved in all group-wide initiatives and share our findings on how we can continue to reinforce the brand nationally. This is not to say that we know it all, in fact part of the benefit of travelling around is that we get ideas on feedback on how we can better service the business. With four divisions there is definitely the need to tailor what we are doing to specific audiences to avoid some of the issues in the past where there was very little guidance from the centre on how things should be done. With the launch of our Marketing Hub and brand library we've managed to turn this on its head and to really embed best practice via our marketing professionals far and wide.

I've always quite enjoyed travelling but at my stage of life I'm now never that keen to stay away from my family for any length of time (despite it meaning an uninterrupted nights sleep!) Sometimes a webinar or conference call just won't do so for the last five weeks I've been away from home for one night a week. This has meant a pretty unhealthy lifestyle with buffet lunches, a lot of snacking on beige food and me missing my Wednesday night kickboxing class (I'll never get that blue belt at this rate!) but as long as you manage the time well nothing can beat face to face contact. Here's my travelogue:

Number seventeen in my series of Kier office photos
Newcastle - Marketing Roadshow:
This was a long journey but definitely worth it. We met with the business development managers to explain some updates to the brand and get an idea of how the Construction division is run in the North East. I'm always surprised at the emphasis put on a regional approach primarily by our clients.

The team in the tunnels
London - Crossrail visit:
This was without doubt my favourite trip of them all. Kier Construction are currently building the new Elizabeth Line from Farringdon to the Barbican and we had the opportunity to go down into the tunnels to see the progress. The sheer scale of the work was breathtaking.

Our impressive stand for which we won an award
Manchester - Charted Institute of Housing:
This is the big trade show for our Living and HM offerings at Manchester Central where I oversaw the graphics and interactive video content on our stand. This was truly a team effort and was a great opportunity to show we are a leading player in this market despite any uncertainty caused by Brexit.

Market analysts touring the facilities at our local depot
Basingstoke - Analyst seminar:
This day took place on the back of our trading update as a presentation to analysts from the City on our corporate position. I was required to manage the recording of a webcast and then to ensure it was accessible on our website alongside the presentation. Afterwards our highways depot gave a very impressive tour.

The Western and Wales marketing team 
Exeter - Marketing Roadshow:
Book ending my travels with another series of presentations to our construction colleagues, we had a packed programme in which we covered brand, marketing literature, social media, microsites and apps and our forthcoming brand audit. I was impressed with the levels of enthusiasm from all.

All of this flying around has meant quite a few extra hours so I'm really looking forward to my summer holiday in a few weeks time. However, I've still found time to self-publish a book version of the first 100 posts of this blog which I'm really happy with. By my calculations it'll be sometime in 2020 before I'm ready to publish volume two - I will have probably racked up quite a mileage by then!
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