Clare Bradnam, sales manager, Bradford University School of Management and Law (Heaton Mount)
Joined Sodexo: 2011
Lives in: York
Q. What was your first job?
A. As a waitress in a hotel.
Q. Tell us about your Sodexo role and what you do every day.
A. I’m the sales manager at Heaton Mount, which is a beautiful 19th century mansion house on University of Bradford Faculty of Management & Law. I’m responsible for ‘selling’ Heaton Mount to external clients as a conference and event venue and hotel primarily.
Q. Sounds like quite varied role.
A. Absolutely and no two days are ever the same for me. I have a database of users to target and I actively promote our venue for conferences, meetings, dinners, residential events and private parties such as weddings.
Q. So you spend a lot of time talking to prospective customers?
A. Yes, most of my day is spent calling new and existing clients, producing quotes, conducting show rounds, updating our social media sites, planning new sales activity and marketing the site, and attending networking/exhibition events to promote our venue.
Q. Tell us a little bit about Heaton Mount, and what Sodexo does.
A. It’s an Italianate mansion, built in 1864. It used to be the residence of a mill owner in Bradford. It has had a sympathetic refurbishment of its meeting rooms and public space recently and we have a large extension accommodating 45 boutique, en-suite double bedrooms. We’re set in approximately five acres of land, so we can host marquees, team building events and great BBQs. Sodexo have been at Heaton Mount and Bradford University since 2000 and we provide soft services including operating seven food and beverage outlets, corporate hospitality, facilities coordination, three receptions, hotel accommodation/student accommodation and sales and admin.
Q. What makes it special?
A. The building and the grounds are out of this world and a real surprise when you come up the drive. Also the people – we have a great team who are all passionate about the house and the service we deliver. We believe it’s all in the detail.
Q. Favourite event to date?
A. One of our corporate clients held a Great Gatsby themed event in a marquee, complete with fire-eaters!
Q. How big is the Sodexo team?
A. Quite small, only 16 of people – but we have a much larger team at the university’s main campus.
Q. Complete the phrase…Heaton Mount ‘delivers the difference’ because….
A. We are passionate about delivering fantastic and memorable events, simply that.
Q. If you could pick any other job what would it be?
A. A rock star!
Q. How would you describe Sodexo as an employer?
A. It’s great to work for such a large organisation with access to a variety of different resources and with such a good reputation. They care.
Q. Who is your greatest inspiration and why?
A. Madonna. She has an amazing work ethic; she continuously will change and adapt to new trends and reinvent herself. If she has any mishaps she just picks herself up and carries on.
Q. What would be your perfect day off?
A. Having a lie in would be nice. Spending the day with my little boy (he’s one and a half) and my husband. And probably going to a music festival and having nice things to eat.
Q. Name your fantasy celebrity dinner guest.
A. J.J. Abrams – I want to quiz him about Lost!
Q. Favourite quote/motto?
A. It’s one I heard recently during a marketing presentation, but I think it summarises the need for good marketing: ‘A squirrel is just a rat with good PR’, Claire Austin.