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Despite the global slowdown, sale of thermal wear remains strong. What are the factors driving it?
You are right: sales of thermals do remain strong. Ten years ago, thermals were mainly a first layer answer to staying warm. Thermals were heavy and stayed hidden under a knitwear layer. This has changed over the last few years: with new technologies, thermals are today much lighter and softer. Designers have produced much wider range of colours & styles.
The results are there today: the thermal category is no longer a commodity range but an innovative one with good growth potential.
Quoting from the company website, "We believe that the values of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) are values for the future." Could you elaborate?
The times when a company could only focus on customers, shareholders and employees are over. Today, the community at large is becoming an important stakeholder and therefore acting responsibly is a real must.
Do you think that global clothing manufacturers have a role in improving occupational health and safety in textile and clothing factories? Kindly Elaborate.
Absolutely. Global clothing manufacturers play a key role in supporting the manufacturing evolution to become a more responsible actor. We need to start from the ground up and partner with the manufacturing plans to work on detailed action plans to improve health & safety. Moving from statements to actions is essential.
In an ever changing world, how do you recognize opportunities and challenges before hand and prepare for the same?
In my role, it has all to do with time management. I try to organize my agenda well in advanced and to properly balance time between daily issues and midterm strategic challenges. I spend significant time on the road, visiting our stores but also our competitors - there is no better way to stay open to long term changes than to spend time talking with your customers.
Finally, what was the biggest challenge that you had faced in your career and how did you overcome it?
Throughout my career, I have faced numerous business challenges. I have found that the single most important way to overcome them has always been the quality and the cohesion of your leading team. With an aligned and dedicated team, ready to confront the reality and act upon in, you can truly write amazing entrepreneurial stories.
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