Graeme Farrington is the Managing Director for United Kingdom and Ireland at Innocent drinks. He is originally from Cheshire and studied Business at De Montfort University in Leicester. His career started in Marketing within the consumer electronics industry, working for both Sony and Dixons Stores Group and since then, he has moved on to span multiple Sales and Marketing roles in a variety of consumer goods brands including Whitbread, Britvic, Coca-Cola. He has lived in St Albans, Hertfordshire for the last 20 years and is married with 3 children.
1 Which place, or city or country do you most feel at home in?
St Albans in Hertfordshire - I moved here over 20 years ago and am still here today. It's been interesting to see the city grow and change a lot in that time, but it's always felt like home throughout.
2 What are your proudest achievements?
As with most people, I've had my share of ups and downs throughout my career. I'm most proud of the fact that I've always tried to remain humble, grounded and been true to myself and my values - whether facing the good or bad times.
3 What inspires you?
My 3 Children are a great inspiration - they (nearly) always look at everything as a learning experience and approach challenges with a growth mindset, which I try to replicate as often as I can.
4 What has been biggest obstacle in your career?
I have quite a varied background across different roles and industries and earlier in my career that sometimes proved to be a challenge when people were looking for specialism rather than more general knowledge - however, that early obstacle has actually proved to be an asset as my career has developed.
5 Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date?
I've been lucky to have been able to work at some great companies in my career with lots of talented people - I think you take something from everyone you work closely with and that shapes who you are today.
6 What is the best aspect about your current role?
I get to steer a team of talented people, aligned behind a common purpose - which is to make it easy for people to do themselves some good. And to get do so within a business that does things the right way - It's a great place to be.
7 And the worst?
We're an ambitious, entrepreneurial company. That means that we have a lot of good ideas and we're constantly looking for the next opportunity. It's my job to make the tough choices and decide what we go after and what we don't - and it’s not always easy.
8 What are your long term goals?
I want to prove that business can be a force for good. It's one of the reasons that I work for innocent (a B-Corp). Over the long term that means proving that we can build a growing business, but one that is truly sustainable and able to give 10% of profits to charity. It's a big ambition, and it's exciting.
9 If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you change?
We need to create an environment where it's easy for people to live happy and healthy lives. At the moment not enough people understand what constitutes a healthy diet and lifestyle so I'd make health and wellbeing top of the agenda, and a compulsory part of people's education.
10 If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why.
Herbert Chapman - I'm a massive Arsenal fan and he was an extraordinary visionary back in the 1920s and 30s, turning Arsenal into the club it is today - whilst also introducing many of the features we take for granted in today's modern football.