Charlotte Cox, Brand Director for Teamsports has been shortlisted for Advertising Week’s inaugural ‘Future is Female’ award. The awards honour individuals in the advertising and marketing industry for “best-in-class” leadership throughout their careers. Here, we catch up with Charlotte to learn more about her career, her leadership style and her ambitions.
Tell us about your role and 2020 goals?
As the Teamsports Brand Director, my ambition is to get more people on and off the pitch wearing and using Canterbury and Mitre. This year, I am leading the team’s focus on levelling the playing field to help everyone, particularly women and children, enjoy the physical and mental health benefits of team sports.
Alongside delivering the brand plans, a more personal goal is to support the delivery of the Pentland Brands global Diversity and Inclusion plan. In 2020, I also became a business mentor for The Prince’s Trust in Nottinghamshire, helping young people to achieve incredible things and I can’t wait to get started.
What’s been the best career benefit to working at Pentland?
The reason I’ve stayed this long is because Pentland has provided me with the opportunity to develop and stretch myself. I’ve had great bosses who were tuned into my desire to continuously learn, so they understood what motivated me. What’s more, it’s been a great place to develop my skill toolkit so that I was ready to move into senior positions when the opportunity arose.
What’s unique about working here?
At Pentland, they get to know you on a personal level, and those deep relationships don’t always exist in many other companies. There’s not just a focus on the results you deliver, it’s about how you do it, too. The ‘what’ and the ‘how’ are equally important. That’s what’s unique.
What are the three biggest learnings of your career so far?
- Don’t rush your career. My career has been more of a climbing frame than a ladder and I’ve been focussed on breadth to ensure I have got a more rounded business tool kit to lean on and transferable skills.
- You can’t solve everything on your own. Build your network both inside the organisation and externally. In a matrix environment you need to work with people to solve problems and go faster with opportunities; you get a much better outcome from this way of working through more diverse perspectives of inputs to keep re-inventing the future.
- Own your own development and be clear on your own sense of purpose. I am really committed to my personal learning journey and understand the impact I can have to deliver the business goals in line with my personal purpose. This has been one of the most important learnings in shaping my career choices to date.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I would like to believe that people feel I am a naturally inclusive leader who invests time in the critical impact opportunities to inspire transformation delivered through engaging others to have a passion for the journey and a sense of pride to achieve more than they thought possible. I’m really passionate about building high performance teams who are set up for success through clarity on the vision, goals and measures of success and who deliver without wasting any time.
What advice would you give others looking to move into leadership roles?
Links to my comment on my career top 3 tips –building your skills, capability, network and experience to become a more rounded business leader. This could be achieved through a business stretch assignment, external network opportunities to bring the outside in or a learning objective in your personal plan. I believe this can help support leaders to make better informed decisions through the ability to see problems and opportunities through the lens of different functional and industry perspectives. The most important thing to remember in leadership roles is to be your authentic self and surround yourself with talented people who are united behind a common goal.
Describe the Pentland culture in three words…
Team-focused, supportive, enriching
Charlotte Cox has over 20 years’ experience across a range of sales, category, product, marketing and international business development roles. Her first taste of Pentland Brands was in a marketing role for Kickers. After broadening her experience at Timex working under license for French Connection, Timberland and Chantelle lingerie, she returned to the business seven years later. In 2015 she was appointed Vice President for Strategic Customers, where she led the strategy and team delivering double-digit sales growth across both footwear and active divisions globally. In June 2018, she was promoted to Brand Director Teamsports.
The award winners will be announced on Wednesday 18th March. Good luck Charlotte!