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A Day in the Life of... Darren Hardiman, Head of Operations, Marketing & E-commerce at DID Electrical

Posted By The Marketing Institute, Wednesday 17 July 2019

darren hardiman

What does a Head of Operations, Marketing & E-commerce at DID Electrical do?

DID Electrical is an Irish family business, which has been delivering, installing and demonstrating the latest in home appliances, TVs, technology, mobile and the best in customer service for over 50 years now. I develop and lead strategy and execution of the marketing, e-commerce, IT, customer support centre, and project teams in the business to support our sales teams across 23 bricks and mortar stores nationwide and online.
 

What were your key career moves to get to your current role?

I have a fairly broad background both in education and employment – which has probably been one of the biggest advantages in getting me to my current role. Having experience in a lot of areas:  design, media, communications, e-commerc, digital marketing, has helped lead me into an omnichannel retail environment – where all of those skills are very transferrable. Not ‘coming through the ranks’ in retail has also helped me perhaps have a different way of thinking or a different approach to certain projects/challenges, and that variety of thinking can bring something additional to support any business or team.
 

What is the biggest challenge you face in your role?

The capacity for a plan to go up in smoke before the commute in - given the competitive nature of the market we operate in. Being dynamic in what we do as a business, though, is also a key strength of DID Electrical – it really goes right back to the origins of the business, the first in Ireland to deliver, install and demonstrate home appliances at a time when they were not commonplace. We try to champion that ability to out-manoeuvre the market in terms of bringing something different to our customers throughout the year, in-store and online.
 

What key skills do you need to be effective in your role?

Having perspective and the ability to bring the organisation together in the right direction across multiple departments. It’s important to have the ability see all corners of the business at once: see the reality from the perspective of customer first and then back, through finance, sales, buying, marketing, etc. to ensure what we’re doing is right for our customers and the business.

 

Describe a typical working day.

Up at 5am or 5.30 (depending on how many snoozes on the phone I can get away with). The rest is a blur.

 

What do you love most about your role?

The people I work with in DID are the most passionate and energetic people I’ve ever worked with. Coming to work is easy if the people you’re with are in it with you – on good days and bad.
 

Looking ahead, where might your career path lead to next?

Working for the last two businesses has taken me from graduating college to just turned 36. In that time, I’ve pushed myself and been given the opportunity to progress to new roles within each of those businesses. For me, I’ll do what I’m doing obsessively until I don’t obsess about it anymore – and then I’ll find a new challenge to obsess about!
 

To whom do you look for professional inspiration in your role?

I’m terrible with this sort of question. I suppose, everyone you meet in life has a nugget or two. You take those nuggets, apply your own thinking to them and hopefully the output is better than the sum of all the parts. I think a lot of people get caught up with having a mentor, or hang on to every word of one or two key people, in or out of work. I think you’ve got to first and foremost look at yourself, be inspired by your own potential, use the ‘nuggets’ and keep challenging yourself to be better.
 

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