Mick’s pride in putting the cus­tomer first

Bray People - - NEWS -

THE cel­e­bra­tions have just about calmed down in Carnew this week fol­low­ing lo­cal man Mick Kelly’s re­cent award for ‘Shop­keeper of the Year’.

The com­mu­nity was filled with ex­cite­ment to learn that their very own lo­cal Candy’s Gala shop man­ager was cho­sen from hun­dreds all over the coun­try.

It’s no sur­prise that Mick was the wor­thy win­ner when his day’s work can in­clude any­thing from jump start­ing cus­tomer cars or re­pair­ing boil­ers to get the heat­ing go­ing at a neigh­bour’s home.

This type of cus­tomer ser­vice might go beyond the call of duty but it is the very na­ture of this va­ri­ety that keeps Mick pas­sion­ate about his work.

‘I gen­uinely love com­ing into work ev­ery morn­ing. That is the beauty of re­tail be­cause ev­ery day is dif­fer­ent and you never know what chal­lenge will be thrown at you,’ he ex­plained.

Liv­ing just a short hop over the Wex­ford bor­der Mick, who is mar­ried to Sheila and fa­ther to ten-month-old Kate, is happy to live close to his work which means he is on hand when­ever he is needed.

‘I took over as man­ager of Candy’s six years ago when Tom and Pa­trick Doyle ac­quired the business. They were look­ing for a man­ager and I jumped at the chance. They are very support- ive but al­low me to do things my own way and they leave me to my own de­vices for the most part,’ he said.

With a staff of 22 un­der his care, Mick has his hands full but is grate­ful that they all embrace the Candy’s ethos of putting the cus­tomer first.

‘With­out the staff I wouldn’t be in a po­si­tion to do what I do for our cus­tomers. If I get called away or go out with a de­liv­ery and a lady comes in that needs her shop­ping car­ried out then the staff that are on will know that she needs this help and will be happy to do it in my ab­sence,’ Mick said.

The im­por­tance of putting the cus­tomer first was some­thing that Mick learned a long time ago when he first started out in re­tail at the ten­der age of 17.

‘I started off work­ing in Pet­tit’s which is a fam­ily-run business. Their ethos from the be­gin­ning was that the cus­tomer was al­ways num­ber one. The em­pha­sis was on mak­ing sure they were happy and that they would re­turn and en­sure re­peat business. To this day that is how their stores are run and cus­tomers ap­pre­ci­ate that level of ser­vice no mat­ter what size the store is.’

Mick worked in Pet­tit’s for six years be­fore mov­ing to Dunnes Stores and later into the hos­pi­tal­ity trade which en­sured that he expe- ri­enced the broad spec­trum that is re­tail and cus­tomer care.

Be­ing sit­u­ated in the south Wick­low vil­lage means that the shop is a hub for the com­mu­nity.

‘We love be­ing in­volved in the com­mu­nity. For ex­am­ple, if we are sup­ply­ing stuff for lo­cal funer- als and the likes I try to go out and help with the set up if I can. Then when the lo­cal drama is on peo­ple come for tick­ets. With­out the com­mu­nity we wouldn’t be here and we are very grate­ful for that. When I got the award it was won­der­ful to re­ceive so much good­will.’

Mick Kelly and his wife Sheila with his Shop­keeper of the Year award.

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