In the second installment in our three-part series of interviews with influential women in the postal sector, Georgina Green, inside sales manager at FedEx Express, talks to PPTI about her role and how to succeed in what is perceived as a ‘man’s world’
Could you tell us a bit about your role at FedEx?
I am an inside sales manager at FedEx, which involves looking after a number of teams across the UK and Ireland who retain and nurture our small and medium business customer base in addition to securing new customers in this segment. I am responsible for helping ensure that the teams meet several business key performance indicators and revenue targets, finding ways to perform our roles more efficiently and supporting the professional development of team members.
What was your career journey (before and at FedEx) to get where you are today? How did you break into the logistics industry?
Coming from a background in retail management, after having my two children I decided I wanted to work more regular hours. Finding the logistics industry and, in particular, FedEx was a happy accident in a sense, but after a decade I am a lifelong member of this industry!
I originally joined FedEx as a customer services representative, quickly seizing an opportunity to work as a senior representative in a new team that I was able to help build and launch as a proof of concept, supporting the UK and other countries in Europe. This role led me to an opportunity with the inside sales team as a team leader. It was in this role that I also began a leadership development program, which helped prepare and qualify me to apply for managerial roles, enabling me to move to inside sales manager.
Following the integration of TNT, I took up an opportunity to work in a customer experience role for a year before taking on the role of sales center manager in the TNT UK domestic business. Following the integration of the businesses, I now look after multiple teams and locations.
What particular challenges are there for women in the industry?
The industry is perceived to be male dominated and, in a sense, it historically has been. However, FedEx and TNT both advocate for more women in business, across all functions and opportunities, which was one of the reasons why I was encouraged to apply for my first role with the business.
Being a mother is possibly one of the greatest challenges, as mothers do often need some flexibility to excel both personally and professionally. Working for leaders who have recognized this has enabled me to succeed at both. In some areas of the business, roles and hours are more suited to parents than perhaps people realize. I am given the flexibility in my day-to-day role to ensure that I am able to meet my work and personal commitments.
What operational challenges have you had to overcome in the past year?
The last year has been both the most challenging and rewarding of my career to date. The pandemic has of course been the most notable operational challenge, which saw me moving 50 team members to a home-working environment in the span of a few days. It also required an entirely new approach to the way I led the teams, with new challenges to consider in helping to ensure the health, safety and well-being of all of my team while navigating new ways of working. I also got a crash course in IT systems to keep everyone online and enabled to work.
At the same time, we have also been preparing the small and medium customer base for Brexit, juggling very short-notice deals with customer education and maintaining their business. I am incredibly proud of the resilience and dedication demonstrated by my teams and the business as a whole.
What advice would you give women looking to start out in the industry?
My top advice specifically for women is “it’s okay to be a woman”! There is sometimes a feeling that you need to be ‘one of the boys’ to do well. In fact, the industry needs a woman’s approach as much as anyone else’s. We bring passion, intensity, organization and a healthy emotional intelligence. I learned this as I started out as a manager. The industry needs diversity, individuality and a challenge of approach or opinion to be innovative and keep on growing for our customers and our people.
Secondly: take every opportunity. If it scares you, you should probably do it. Staying in our comfort zones will not help us grow. Take the challenge and be confident with it. I recently read that the chances are, our male counterparts didn’t think twice but women have a tendency to ensure we’re really ready for the next opportunity that comes along, and we already are.
What is your favorite thing about working in the logistics industry/at FedEx?
The industry never stops changing, innovating and growing. I learn new things every day and make so many connections with people on a daily basis. The opportunities are limitless. FedEx specifically encourages professional development at all levels and in all areas of the business, with significant consideration given to education for team members. I have been able to participate in so many leadership and development programs that have all enabled me to achieve my goals, learn from my peers and be the best leader I can be.
What are your career goals for the next five years?
My goals over the next five years are to continue on my leadership journey, fulfill the vision of the business strategies and support people as I go, and ultimately work toward becoming a director at FedEx to help shape the business in the coming years.
Better known as George to her colleagues and peers, she is the mother of two teenagers (a daughter who is 17 and a son who is 15) and a motivational leader for FedEx.
As well as raising her children with her husband of 17 years, George has held a number of roles in multiple industries including telecoms and retail management, before embarking on a career with FedEx a decade ago.
Currently George is an inside sales manager at FedEx after holding a variety of roles, starting as a customer services advisor. Enjoying life in logistics, George sought to progress within the company, quickly moving to a senior role that oversaw the build and launch of a proof-of-concept team focused on business development.
This role paved the way for George to move to become a team leader in FedEx sales. At the same time, she successfully passed the FedEx leadership development program, enabling her to be accredited for management at FedEx, which led to a leadership role in sales.
Following the integration of TNT, and seeking a development opportunity and challenge, George moved to a role in customer experience for TNT, looking after cross-functional projects and initiatives that improved customer satisfaction scores. However, George’s love of the sales environment resulted in a subsequent move to the role of sales center manager for TNT’s UK domestic business.
The integration of FedEx brought yet more opportunity, allowing George to open a new location for the integrated sales teams, which she still leads alongside others across the UK and Ireland.
George dedicates a great deal of time to her work and is an innovative person, always seeking ways to improve working life for her team members, focusing on their well-being as well supporting them in their professional development.
When not working, George enjoys time with her children and husband, her wider family and her four dogs and four cats. Aside from this, she has revisited her love of the clarinet and saxophone.