Category Archives: Awareness

Purple Tuesday

Purple Tuesday

Several of our sites took part in supporting purple Tuesday this week. Purple Tuesday is a day which was created to bring improvement, value and awareness to disabled customers.
Across the UK, the Purple Pound – the consumer spending power of disabled people and their families is worth £249 billion and is rising by an average of 14% per annum. Worldwide the Purple Pound equates to a staggering £2.25 trillion, yet less than 10% of businesses have a targeted plan to access this market.
The photos show 3 of our sites taking part which include Bluewater, Broughton Shopping Park and Clarks Village.
Bluewater is the first UK shopping centre to achieve the status of Disability Confident Leader. To support retailers, they produced a pocket guide which provides practical hints designed to support retail staff in becoming more confident in providing good customer service to disabled customers. We are thrilled to announce that Bluewater have also recently introduced hidden disability sunflower lanyards. These lanyards indicate that the wearer has a hidden disability and may require additional assistance when visiting (e.g. hard of hearing, dementia etc).
Martin Read on Leadership

Martin Read on Leadership

Many leaders labour under the misapprehension that they’re better than their team thinks they are. Don’t fall into the same trap, says Martin Reed.

The traits of a leader

The traits of a great leader are vision, passion, optimism and, most of all, integrity. These traits form the building blocks of trust between you and your team. It isn’t about the leader seeking glory or basking in the limelight; rather, it’s about making their teams happy and productive.

Don’t seek the limelight

Take football manager Jose Mourinho as an example. He’s always giving interviews and putting himself at the forefront of everything. Compare him with Dave Brailsford – the general manager of six times Tour de France-winning Sky Cycling Team – who focuses his efforts on supporting his team. Bad leaders are only interested in what their peers (and public) think of them, rather than their teams.

Pass on the responsibility 

It’s essential that great business leaders make sure they pass on the responsibility of leadership through their teams at all levels and don’t just see themselves as ‘the leader’.

Research carried out by anthropologist Professor Robin Dunbar suggests that the human brain has a finite ability to hold down only 147 real relationships and, if half of those are personal, I can only hold around 70 work-related relationships.

In a business of more than 3,200 staff and hundreds of clients we need leaders at every level if we are to connect not just with our staff, but also with clients, suppliers and wider stakeholders.

The vision for our business is “to have staff who love working for us and clients who love working with us”, and we don’t focus on being the biggest or most well known. This has worked well for us.

Set the example at the top

My job is to behave and be seen to be a great leader so the other leaders at every level in our business can have a reference point to be great leaders in their own right.

Most leaders think they are better than their teams think they are. There is little data on this, but it is my experience. So how do I determine if my leadership skills are up to the job? Well, you can’t really get quantifiable feedback through surveys, for example, but you can get a feeling of the effectiveness of your leadership through small interactions with your team.

Be seen as an ally

It sounds strange, but you know when people truly see you as their leader when they don’t see you as a leader. My team members trust me to help them through the tough times and they seek my counsel when they have problems. They know they can count on me for support.

However, I know when people don’t see me as a leader – it is when they hide things from me and only tell me the good stuff, until they have absolutely no choice but to share the bad news. This is a sign that they don’t trust me and so I have to make sure I give them reasons to do so. Often, they have had bad experiences in previous companies where they may have seen a different leadership approach.

Find your inspiration – and a bit of perspective

If I am looking for inspiration, I talk to a friend of mine who is a senior nurse who heads a team in a children’s hospital. She has to lead in extremely stressful situations.

When things are bad, she has to lead by example and her integrity is core to her beliefs. If her team members don’t trust her, the results could be catastrophic. When I am having a bad day because the latest bid we tendered for didn’t go our way I speak to her to put my working life into perspective!

Martin Reed is CEO at Incentive FM Group 

Facilities Magazine

Purple Tuesday at Incentive FM

Purple Tuesday at Incentive FM

Across our Incentive FM sites our wonderful teams have proudly been supporting  Purple Tuesday!

The aim of Purple Tuesday is to make customer-facing businesses more aware of these opportunities and challenges and inspire them to make changes to improve the disabled customer experience over the long term.

The Team at Bluewater Shopping Centre are in full support of  Purple Tuesday. Bluewater Shopping Centre is the first centre in the UK to achieve Disability Confident level 3 status!

The team at Shrewsbury Shopping centre, have been busy supporting Purple Tuesday. To mark the day, the centre’s security and cleaning staff have committed to undergo further disability awareness training and wear purple armbands.


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