Deputy Store Manager
Arcadia Group

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Prudence B

My name is Prudence B. I’m twenty-one years old and I work for the company Wallis. I’m a deputy manager in one of their stores, a top store in Bluewater. We’ve got a huge team of about thirty of us, which I take control of, look after, make sure they’re all doing the job that they’re supposed to be doing throughout the day, and then back of house duties, which are to do with like payroll, SSA, health and safety, new procedures that come through, obviously to relay to the team. I’ve had so many different things that I wanted to do.

I wanted to be an actress at first, and then as soon as I kind of got to about year nine I decided that I wanted to be an English teacher, and that I would study English for my GCSEs and hopefully get the grades to carry onto A level, but my GCSEs didn’t come through at the grades that I wanted them to, so then I had a complete change of heart. And due to the fact that I was actually a Saturday girl at Wallis in Bluewater, funnily enough, I was cashing up one day with my manager, who is my manager currently, and just kind of said to her ‘How did you get into this?

I love doing the four hours that I do every week,’ and she told me about the course that Arcadia as a group do to be able to train you up to become a manager or a trainee manager, deputy manager, etc, and decided that actually that’s kind of what I wanted to do. Something that has had an impact on my life would probably be not getting my GCSE English grades because obviously it did, it change how my career progressed, and the fact that if I had have got it, like I said, I would have been studying university English, currently, but instead I’m actually a deputy manager of a top seven store for Wallis.

I’ve probably been inspired by two people. One is my current manager, and I think that’s due to the fact that I was interested in how she’d got to where she had got to, and then somebody on a personal level was probably my father, due to the fact that he had a difficult upbringing but has managed to be a huge success for himself. He has a very good job, and a lovely house, and I guess if you put your mind to it you can do anything, which he’s a pure walking example of that. A huge single event that has had an impact on my life was probably my parents splitting up.

I was about sixteen at the time, so still kind of within school, and it was a great shock to be honest with you. I wasn’t expecting it, and the fact that it had changed everything, how we were as a family, if you like. But I guess now I see how much more beneficial it is that they’re not together, and the fact that they do still see each other and are still friends, which I guess is better than them being angry with each other constantly.

Oh goodness. In five year’s time I’d like to see myself probably as a manager of my own store. Obviously, I’m a deputy at the moment, but at this current time I don’t think a manager’s role is what I’m after; however, in five year’s time, with the extra experience behind me, yes, I’d like to be my own store manager.

Prudence is the Deputy Manager of a Wallis store. She wasn’t very happy with her GCSE results, but she was loving her Saturday job in Wallis, so she decided to apply for management training within the company. So instead of studying English at university she’s now helping to manage one of Wallis’s top stores.

More information about Managers and directors in retail and wholesale

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

59%  male 
41%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Retail and wholesale managers and directors plan, organise, direct and co-ordinate the operations of major retail and wholesale establishments in order to maximise business performance and meet financial goals.
Entry requirements vary from company to company. Entrants may possess GCSEs/S grades, A levels/H grades, GNVQs/GSVQs, a BTEC/SQA award, a degree or equivalent qualification. Entry is also possible through promotion after gaining sufficient experience. NVQs/SVQs in Retail Operations are available at Level 4.
  • Appoints staff, assigns tasks and monitors and reviews staff performance;
  • Liaises with other staff to provide information about merchandise, special promotions etc. to customers;
  • Ensures that adequate reserves of merchandise are held and that stock keeping is carried out efficiently;
  • Ensures customer complaints and queries regarding sales and service are appropriately handled;
  • Oversees the maintenance of financial and other records and controls security arrangements for the premises;
  • Authorises payment for supplies received and decides on vending price, discount rates and credit terms;
  • Examines quality of merchandise and ensures that effective use is made of advertising and display facilities.
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