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Meet Simon Slee : Owner of FASTSIGNS Hammersmith

by Nicola Moseley | Sep 21, 2021

We had the opportunity to have a chat with Simon Slee - owner of FASTSIGNS Hammersmith.

Find out more about his day-to-day workflow, his view on growing a strong customer service business and some other fun interesting facts about him.

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1. What is your job description within FASTSIGNS Hammersmith?
Owner / Director

2. Tell us a bit about yourself, where you from, what you do outside of work?
I grew up in Melbourne but have worked in Sydney, London and Abu Dhabi. Having four daughters keeps me pretty busy. I like to travel and look forward to my holidays. I am a keen skier and also was once a fairly good rugby player. I still follow the Wallabies but this tends to do too much for my blood pressure!

3. What’s a fun fact about you related to work?
People who know me are not too wrong when they describe me as having two left hands! So the hands on stuff in the business is not my main focus. I prefer looking after the front of the business managing clients and looking for prospective clients.

4. Tell us about your background as a designer/installer/consultant?
I use to be a banker so I came into the signage business with very little knowledge. I have spent most of my time in sales of financial products.

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5. What does your typical day usually entail?
It usually starts with a to do list of about 6-8 items and usually ends with a do to list of 6-8 items! I am constantly reprioritising my list as opportunities or problems emerge during the day. Being a business owner but also working in the business, I wear many hats during the day. As well as managing the financial aspects and overseeing the team, I also spend a large portion of my time in sales and managing key accounts. A part of my day is also always dedicated to marketing and networking as I value this as a key part of business growth.

6. What is the most interesting part of your job?
It would have to be the diverse range of people and enquiries we face. From providing creative solutions for IKEA's TV advertising props to decorations at the London Zoo, to large scale graphics for a satellite dish in Istanbul. We have been involved in some really creative and eye catching works.

7. How do you approach a client brief/enquiry?
We have a pretty successful process which involves 4Gs. Greet, Gather, Give and Get! Follow this process and it seems to always get results!

8. What project have you been particularly proud of?
We at one stage were providing all promotional and marketing material for ALDO shoes stores across the UK, Ireland and Denmark. This was seasonal and regular work. But our collaboration with Sixt Rent A Car remains something I am particularly proud of. From Aberdeen to Portsmouth we have been working alongside them and helping their brand stand out from the crowd.

9. Any specific project that stands out to you?
I completed work on a vehicle for EXTEND, a west London building company. The owner called me up weeks later to say thank you and sorry. He explained he wanted to make contact earlier but he was just too busy. He had just secured £230k of business off the back of the advertising on his vehicle! Our work has had such an impact on so many businesses. This moment will always stand out to me as an important one.

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10. How do you ensure every project is completed to the highest possible standard?
By having great staff that share the same high values as I do - the highest standard is the standard.

11. What is the ‘trickest’ signs/graphics to produce/install?
From a logistics perspective completing our project in Ghana proved quite tricky. Everything from shipping to inoculating our staff had to be covered. But the job was completed successfully and the client was very happy!

12. What has been your highlight of the past year (2020)?
Surviving and now hopefully thriving! We managed to adapt quite quickly and supplied products that were not our usual run of the mill items - but this filled a void and made up for a shortfall of demand in other areas. Winning the West London Awards for best Wholesale /Retailer Business was the icing on the cake.

13. Are there new products on the horizon that you will be working with?
We are always on the lookout but I have been pleased in the increasing interest in Digital Signage. There is really no downfall of having a digital display at your business. It covers a wide range of opportunities - from advertising products, latest news, wayfinding, just to name a few. And can benefit any type of business.

14. What do you think is the benefit of investing in good signage for your business?
As they say : A business without a sign is a sign of no business. Signage is most often the first impression a person has of a business, so you want it to be good!

15. What advice would you give a business interested in new signs?
Go for it!

16. What is your dream holiday destination?
Mauritius

17. What did you want to be when you grow up?
Stockbroker

18. If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be?
Michelin Star Inspector

Give Simon and the team a call today to talk about your visual communication needs and find out what helpful signage solutions they have to offer. Simon is always available on 0207 751 1121 or by email at 872@fastsigns.com.

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