Team Spotlight – Meet Andy

Name: Andrew Hollingworth

Title: International Business Development Manager

Time with the company: 10 months

Your first ever job was…

Cleaning in a small restaurant in New York, when I was 16. I have family that live out in Fire Island, and I went out there after my exams for 2 months. My Uncle said “Make yourself useful – I’ve got you this gig” and so every morning at 5:30am I was there doing the prep work, sweeping the floors and cleaning the toilets so they were ready to open for breakfast.

Did you always want a career in sales…

Well my first job straight out of university was media sales, before I went back to complete my Masters degree. I’ve often thought about what career I would want to do if I started all over again, and I genuinely don’t know. I think sales has always been a bit in my blood, as my dad did it as a job, so there’s something innate there.

What attracted you to the FanFinders’ project…

I’d heard about Your Baby Club previously but after speaking with Alec [Dobbie] on the phone, he took me through the ethos here, and the USPs we have compared to everyone else. It just all stood out, based on having already spoken to companies in our market, hearing that we were delivering something no-one else could. It was genuinely interesting and I’ve never looked at data and tech at the level that we use it here.

One thing that’s important to your sales approach…

Not going in with the assumption that you know the answers already. You should be the one asking all the questions and making sure you aren’t just guessing about a company’s issues. It’s about finding out what specifically matters to them and considering how we can fix it. As opposed to saying ‘I think you have this problem and know we can fix it this way,’ shoehorning them towards a solution. People appreciate that honesty and it earns respect.

How to process rejection…

Anyone who says they don’t get bothered by it all is probably lying a bit. There is an element of growing a thicker skin the longer you’ve been doing it, as you know that until a brand has said yes and signed the contract, there’s a chance it might fail. I tend to keep positivity for further down the line and focus on ensuring they have all they need to make a decision.

Your favourite thing about working here is…

That you can easily have a chat with anyone. If you need an answer from Alec [Dobbie] or Adam [Gillett], you can contact them. No-one is hidden behind a closed office door or by appointment-only. People here are also really willing to give up their time to help new starters, despite probably doing stuff that is 10x more important than I’ll be able to fathom.

If you could switch your job with anyone else at FanFinders…

Maybe Raf [Raphael Marsh]? Because it seems intense but I’ve never had a job where you just have stuff to do. Sales is always about generating your own work, so I’ve never been on the other side where you just get stuff piled on you. I’ve never had to be that sort of high-functioning, creative machine and I’d love to know if I could do it, but I probably couldn’t.

Now the serious stuff. Tea or coffee…

Coffee on a weekday morning and tea at the weekend. Coffee gets you going in the morning – it’s a functional drink for me. Whereas tea is a nice ‘sit down on the sofa on a Saturday and sip’ type of beverage.

Your biggest passion is…

Film, and in a geeky way. My Masters was actually in the really useful topic of film and television aesthetics. So I’ll go through ebbs and flows of wanting to write about it and get back into that side of things, but then just go through 6 months of enjoying films for the sake of films.

Ok then, the three films every person in the world should watch…

Drive, there’s a French film from 1960 which is called Breathless in the UK and then maybe something like Casino.

You can only eat one meal for the rest of your life…

I’m not much of a food guy. If I could swap every meal for a pill that gave you essential nutrition, I’d probably be alright with that [Laughter].

If your cats Bunny and Fluffy were to speak, they would say…

Definitely just “Feed me”. That’s all they care about.

Finally, if you were to write a self-help book, the topic would be…

How to just get on with stuff and trust that you’ll figure it all out somewhere along the line before it becomes too important.

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