Active-wear on and it’s time to run. I snoozed my alarm a few too many times so there’s no time for the gym, but I’m running to work instead (literally). I am currently training for a half marathon, so I need to squeeze in more running in the week, and as a substitute for public transport, it’s not a bad option (especially when I detour to run around the Tan).
I arrive at work red-faced and sweaty. I sneak up to my desk to grab the bag of spare clothes I brought to work last week (so that I really have no excuse not to run to work if I am time poor, and it’s much better than running with a backpack – yes, I have tried!). I shower and get changed.
First thing I do when I get into work is to check my emails. I want to make sure I respond to any urgent requests that our international brands may have sent overnight. I have been waiting on new product information from brands, and thankfully I received a few responses. The brands send the product formulations and packaging artwork for their new launches for me to review. I follow up with the brands I haven’t yet heard from.
MMM (Monday Morning Meeting)! Religiously, at 9:30 am every Monday, the whole office stands up and huddles around the centre of the office. It’s the one time each week where everyone unites, as we are usually split across two buildings. We receive a sales update on the past week and insights into new brand launches or new store openings. We are introduced to any new starters in the office, and I always love the fun (but mostly obscure) facts that are revealed about them! The Talent & Culture team reads out the thank-you cards submitted last week, acknowledging hard-working and generous team members across the business. MECCA’s founder, Jo Horgan, then rounds up the meeting with a few snapshots of her week and finishes by sharing customer feedback. Jo always ends the meeting with her catch-cry, ‘onwards and upwards!’; leaving everyone inspired and motivated to kick-on, full steam ahead, for the upcoming week.
Product review time; let’s get stuck into it! One of the key aspects of my role in Compliance is to ensure that the formulations and packaging of our products are compliant with Australian regulations. I start by reviewing the formulations for the new products launching early next year. (Job perk: insider knowledge into new products launching!) Once this is complete, I move on to reviewing the products’ packaging to ensure that all the claims made on the packaging are substantiated and permissible. I then go back to the Brands and Buying team with any recommended changes and request additional documents that are needed.
And that’s enough product reviewing for one morning. I recruit my friendly neighbourhood Grad, Antonia, who sits one row over from me in Finance, for a coffee run. We head to our favourite local spot, Cheeky Monkeys, and wait for a coffee while chatting about netball strategies for our game tonight.
My team heads over to the couches for our weekly Compliance meeting. Each person discusses their priorities for the week and if we need any assistance. We somehow always end up wandering off on a tangent, which could arguably be considered marginally related to compliance…. but always interesting nonetheless.
I head down to the New Brands Room with Olivia, my fellow Compliance-whizz, to check out the products MECCA is considering launching. We review the packaging and ingredients alongside the New Brands Team to discuss the feasibility of the products and any compliance-related issues we think might arise. It’s always a fun time getting a sneak peek into brands we haven’t even signed yet and having a little play with the products too.
Lunch. All that manual labour playing with products has me hungry. I grab my salad from the fridge and head outside to enjoy the weather with Olivia and some of the other Grads.
Back in the office for the weekly Trade meeting. The Head of Retail gives us a run-down of weekly sales for bricks and mortar stores, online, and insights into any brand visits or education programs that have taken place over the past week. It’s usually only the heads of each department who are invited to this meeting, however, our Graduate Managers wanted to give us the opportunity to attend, and gain valuable insights into the business.
Research time - my favourite part of the day and probably of my role in Compliance. I am currently researching the regulations around primary and secondary sunscreens; and boy, is it fascinating. The world of SPF was something I was interested in prior to coming into this rotation, and an area I have really enjoyed delving into deeper. It’s far from straightforward! I am presenting to several departments next week on sunscreen regulations, so I need to complete the slide deck and send it to my Manager for review. I meet with one of the other Graduates, Sarah to discuss my approach to the presentation and brainstorm ways to make it interactive and engaging.
Quick, quick, quick – everybody hustle. We receive an email from reception telling us that a snack promotion company has sent each department boxes of cheese and crackers.There is a stampede down to the mailroom to collect our afternoon delight. We indulge in our cheese in the kitchen before returning to our desks.
I hop into one of the meeting rooms for a call with one of our skincare brands and the Brands & Buying Team. The Brand Manager runs through the Brand’s sales figures, new product launches and schedule for the upcoming brand visit. I have been recruited for this call to discuss one of the SPF products the brand wants to launch next year, and share information on the testing requirements the brand will need to undertake. I also provide information on the packaging requirements to align with Australian regulations.
Back at my desk to review and summarise a distribution agreement for a newly signed brand. I highlight the terms that vary to our standard distribution agreement so that key stakeholders in the business can sign off on them. I am always interested in the new brands’ negotiation process and how the distribution rights are discussed and ultimately agreed upon. Maybe I will spend my next rotation in the New Brands Team to see how it all unfolds first hand.
I finish up the distribution agreement summary, which means it’s home time. I pack up my desk and make my way to Richmond station. I made sure to bring my Myki this morning on the run, as I am definitely not running back home.
At home, I change back into active-wear and prepare some dinner. I am currently completing my Practical Legal Training (PLT), and have a Consumer Law assessment later this week. I eat my dinner while revising for the assessment.
I head off to meet my team, ‘Flawless Execution’, at social netball. We started off the season slightly netball-challenged, but have steadily improved; either way, it’s always a good time.
By the time I get home, I am exhausted. I am keen to shower and hop into bed. I have just started watching Fargo, on my brother’s recommendation, and am hooked! Episode 2 here I come.