Welcome to my blog! This week I’m talking about recruitment, product research and the importance of getting enough rest.
I spent a fascinating day working on ideas for our very own Unforgettable products. Katie, Alex, David and I went along to meet a design agency and discuss strategy. We all agreed there’s so much opportunity to innovate in this sector that it’s important to prioritise and consider what really makes a product “unforgettable”. We also know how important it is to reduce prices, as we can never make products in this sector available to the mass market unless they are much more affordable than they are right now.
We brainstormed some crazy, imaginative ideas using Artificial Intelligence and all the latest technology, but also came up with some simple personalised paper products too. Overall I think it was enjoyable and inspiring for all of us.
I spent a lot of time doing second round interviews for the role of Marketing Director. James Honeywell, the former Head of Consumer Marketing at Nintendo, really stood out, as did several other fantastic people. One person wrote a fantastic covering letter, explaining that her parent had dementia and she’d come up with an idea for developing a market place where people could access advice, information and products… then she went online to do more research and discovered that we had launched! She was upset, but pleased because she felt we had executed the idea as well as she could have. She had a very interesting high profile role in the city and I’d love her to come and work with us at some point when we find the right role for her.
Later, I spoke to the disability charity Leonard Cheshire about Unforgettable products which might be relevant to people living in Leonard Cheshire care homes. I also spoke to Glenn Knight, Managing Director of the Mobile Virtual Dementia Tour. Glenn is an innovative, impressive guy and I’m looking forward to doing the tour soon.
I finished the day attending a fantastic Big Issue event on the subject of social investing. Speakers included Nigel Kershaw from the Big Issue Group, Keith Starling from Big Society Capital and Geoff Walker who is the Chief Executive of Sandwell Community Caring Trust – and was an incredible speaker with a huge amount of social enterprise experience. I also met Paul Forster who is the founder of the online recruitment company Indeed. Paul is a fascinating man who’s now getting involved with impact investment and social enterprise.
Today was dominated by lunch with James Honeywell during which David and I offered him the job of Marketing Director, and I’m delighted to say he accepted the following day. He’ll be starting at Unforgettable on June 1.
I spent the rest of the day working on our tracker report and reviews – we’ll be issuing it shortly.
I spoke to telecare company Tunstall about how we might work together. Tunstall is helping to create a dementia-friendly technology charter to help everyone with dementia benefit from technology which meets their needs.
I also received an initial report back from the product agency we met on Monday. It was very strong, but it’s clear that product development is expensive and we’re going to have to raise lots of money to make it happen.
I finished the day with our creative agency Antidote hearing their initial ideas for our national marketing campaign. I really liked them, now we just have to decide which will work best for us.
Recruiting James Honeywell was definitely the highlight of my week, I’m really excited to have such a high profile marketing director on board. Otherwise, it’s been a very tiring week, not helped by the fact that I’m still finding it difficult to switch off from work and take enough rest. I also foolishly decided to drag myself into the office when I was ill – and probably should have stayed in bed.
Whilst it is possible, I’ve now discovered, to continue working when you have ‘flu (providing you dose yourself up) isn’t very considerate to your colleagues – and has made my recovery slower than I would have liked.
So…I’ve learnt my lesson. Sorry team!