FROM BOOTS TO BLYTHSWOOD: ANNE AIMS AT NATIONAL STANDARD
Anne Failes enjoyed a successful career in retail, first with Bodyshop and then with Boots, where her most recent role as care services manager involved working with 28 care homes and liaising with health boards and the care inspectorate.
But the loss of both her parents a year ago led her to re-evaluate her work. “Mum passed away on 1st November and then Dad, who had been caring for her, died suddenly just two weeks later.
“God took them away, quickly and together,” she says. “It was better for them but it was a shock for me and I needed time to think. The church and the minister were a great support. It was at church that I heard that Blythswood was looking for a retail manager and I thought this is for me.”
Anne’s husband Martin is a school teacher and they have four children. Describing her experience of joining Blythswood in July, she says it is like a family. “Everybody is welcoming,” she says.
As retail manager, Anne provides leadership to the shop managers, staff and volunteers in Blythswood’s chain of 25 shops and superstores. “We are aiming to move our shops away from the charity shop look where customers have to rummage through everything,” she says. “Our Nairn shop has been refitted and turned around and we’ve made changes in Broadford too.
“Our staff are being trained to the safety and quality level set by Revolve, Scotland’s national re-use quality standard.”
Photo above: Anne (right) with Viv Mackay, manager of Blythswood’s Charity Superstore in Evanton: “My aim is to develop Blythswood as a brand and make it market leader in re-use stores.”