PiRA24 Judge Interview: Martin Newman
Meet Martin Newman, respectfully known as the “Consumer Champion,” and a seasoned professional with a career spanning more than four decades in the world of consumer-facing businesses.
Martin is the latest industry leader to join the judging panel for the awards for People in Retail.
Martin is a versatile professional with expertise across retail, advisory, and education. He successfully sold Practicology, a global advisory business, and has authored two books. Martin runs educational programs, including a mini MBA with the Oxford College of Marketing. Engaging in consulting projects for brands like Specsavers and Toyota, he focuses on omnichannel initiatives. Martin is a sought-after speaker, participating in dinners, roundtable discussions, and contributing to white papers. In board advisory roles, he collaborates with organisations like Clearpay and Marketplacer and chairs the retail arm of the Scouts. Additionally, he sits on the board of In Kind Direct, a charity distributing essential products to other charitable organisations. Recently appointed as an ambassador for The Retail Trust, Martin is dedicated to supporting retailers during challenging times.
We sit down with Martin to find out more about why he is involved in these awards.
What inspired you to become a judge for the People in Retail Awards?
I believe the success of any business lies with its people. And I’m a huge advocate for retailers inspiring their own people to continue to do the best job they can. Therefore, celebrating those who do is a great way of continuing this virtuous circle.
In your opinion, what role do awards like this play in the retail industry, and why do you think they are important?
We need to continually motivate our people and engage them. Having awards that recognize excellence in different roles within retail will help to encourage colleagues to do their best in their jobs.
What criteria or qualities are you particularly looking for when evaluating nominations for the People in Retail Awards?
People who have gone above and beyond in their roles. Either in relation to their own tasks or in helping and supporting others. You’re looking for collaboration, inspiration and innovation. Good people who want to help, encourage others, deliver great service and do good.
Any advice or top tips for companies entering?
Do it! Awards are a great opportunity to get everyone pulling together and motivated towards being the best at what they do.
The Art of Successful Retail
Last month, we spoke to Martin about his e-book which looks at how to measure the return on inclusion
When we talk about ROI, it’s not just about financial returns; it extends to various aspects, including the return on inclusion. In the past, when I served on retail boards and based on my own experiences, there was a time when concepts like sustainability or diversity and inclusion were seen merely as checkboxes on a to-do list.
Frankly, many boards didn’t fully grasp the benefits, let alone the moral imperatives behind these initiatives. But today, I’d argue that most businesses understand the moral obligation to be diverse, inclusive, and sustainable. However, the majority still struggle to realise the commercial value of these efforts. This is where the challenge lies; they often perceive these initiatives as a cost rather than a benefit and don’t see the immediate opportunity.
Entries for the People in Retail awards are now open.