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AXMINSTER:Kelly one of ‘brightest young talents’

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

CERTIFICATION: Kelly Baker and Master Paul von der Heyde

CERTIFICATION: Kelly Baker and Master Paul von der Heyde

Axminster Tools & Machinery (AT&M) employee Kelly Baker has widened her professional horizons through an intense three-week course run by The Furniture Makers’ Company in London. Kelly was one of only four people selected for the course, which aimed to provide participants with a broad range of furniture industry skills they can use in their workplaces. The Furniture Makers’ Company selected “four of the brightest and best young talents” for the intensive three-week experience. The course covered components and raw materials, the complexity of manufacturing, testing, buying criteria, pricing, marketing, merchandising, customer service, consumer law and after-sales. The students also attended tours, presentations and seminars hosted by other companies including John Lewis, DFS and Marks & Spencer. In total the group members visited 17 companies travelling the width and breadth of the UK. Kelly, who works in specialist sales business development, said: “I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the course. “I feel extremely fortunate to have been given the opportunity to spend time with some of the furniture industries’ leaders. “We were given a broad, yet detailed insight into the world of business and I have no doubt I will be able to use the skills I have learnt throughout my career.” AT&M sales director Alan Styles commented: “The three weeks gave Kelly a fantastic opportunity to gain an insight and knowledge of the furniture industry. The presentations delivered by all four of the young professionals were excellent and The Furniture Makers’ Company did a very thorough job of bringing a good number of companies together to make the course possible.” The course culminated with each of the four young professionals giving a presentation about what they had learned over the three weeks, and how they felt this could be put to practical use by their respective companies. The presentations were made to a group of VIPs, liverymen and senior representatives from the companies involved. Paul von der Heyde, the Master of The Furniture Makers’ Company, went on to say: “The four young professionals, who have enjoyed learning everything from design to retail and from fabrics to fitted kitchens, have had the opportunity of a lifetime.  “I am sure it will stand them in good stead for great careers in our growing industry.  “We owe huge thanks to everyone involved for making this possible and look forward to developing the course further for the future, so we can offer this opportunity to more talented young people who will help our industry to flourish for many years to come.”

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