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May 10, 2016

Meet the Team: Verity Weedon – Director of Operations

– Describe a typical day at Ariella?

It is difficult to describe a typical day, because what I love about working for this company the most is that no two days are the same. I will normally spend a Friday afternoon writing a guideline plan of action for the following week, factoring in all the known deadlines that we need to achieve.

I currently oversee our QC, design and sampling departments so my top priority is always making sure these departments are running efficiently.

My days can include anything from, Skype meetings with our overseas factories, in house sample/collection development meetings, fit sessions/approvals, strategy meetings, and also general meetings with our account managers to ensure we are keeping up with Critical path deadlines and servicing all of our customers efficiently at all times.

I also spend time out of the office with either our customers in various locations across London, or on factory visits.

I enjoy my time whether it be in or out of the office.  Working with such a great team at Ariella, and getting great support from each and every colleague means that the fast paced, challenging environment that we work in is achievable and as stress free as it can be. Like any company, there are times that the pressure rises but we all pull together without any fuss and get the jobs done.  A great working environment is the best ingredient for a successful company in my opinion.

– What is the biggest challenge of your job?

I would have to say that multitasking and the ability to change and adapt my own and my teams workload quickly, responding and reacting to demands that are often unplanned is an ongoing challenge.

However, this is the nature of our industry, situations and opportunities often arise, like customer‘s having a last minute budget to buy options from Ariella. This simply wouldn’t make business sense to avoid, meaning I am constantly reanalysing and amending our priority and order of work to efficiently deliver the best service we can to all our clients with the most profitable outcome for Ariella.

– What would be your advice to someone who wants to break into the industry?

I think working for a supplier in the initial stages of your career is a great eye opener.  Generally the teams and departments are much smaller than working in a head office of a retailer.  I think this benefits an individual because it is much easier to broaden your understanding quickly on how all departments work together which in my opinion is key for development. When a team is smaller you also naturally have more of an opportunity to get yourself known, meaning you can become a key member of staff for the company much more quickly.

It is important you have a thick skin, or if not, you need to grow one very quickly! The industry moves at a fast pace, as will your daily duties. you cannot have a sluggish or relaxed attitude to your work, because you simply would not be able to keep up! However, if you are up for a challenge, and enjoy working on a variety of projects, working in fashion can be so rewarding and exciting.  There is never a dull moment which is why after being in the industry for 8 years, I am certainly not done yet!

– Which piece from the Ariella’s new collection you enjoyed working on the most?

I absolutely adore the Gigi. The colour is fab, and I feel it has a modern twist on classic elegance. I really like the direction our design team are heading in. We are at the beginnings of putting together SS17 and if AW16 is anything to go by (which will be launched in August) then I’m sure I am going to want to wear every piece!

 – Finally, what do you like doing on the weekends to relax after a long week?

Wine, family, friends and spending time with my Husband to be and our beautiful giant house Rabbit called Poppy.