Thank you PwC. You’re hired!

28 November 2019

There were no utterances of “complete shambles”, no cups of tea in the Bridge Café and, at the end of the day, no one was fired… but none of that stopped five PwC volunteers from giving 110 per cent in Norwood’s first Retail Store Challenge.

The event – held across the charity’s two retail stores on Golders Green Road – saw five volunteers from the multinational professional services network go head to head in an Apprentice-style challenge to sell, sell, sell.

As in the early rounds of Alan Sugar’s TV series, the teams were split into male and female. Team One consisted of Abi, Jess and Adi, who spruced up the look of the womenswear store before concentrating on a “friendly approach” to draw customers in. Team Two was made up of Jonny and Louis, who focused on “improving the customer experience” and making small changes to the menswear shop, not least redressing the mannequins.

As the day went on, Team One’s fun Christmas theme at the store’s entrance started to draw attention, but Team Two used their know-how and sales patter to move on a pre-loved antique typewriter with a healthy price tag.

The project was a new addition to Norwood’s Employee Volunteering Programme but, with the tills ringing and awareness and funds raised, there will certainly be more opportunities for other corporate partners to undertake similar challenges in the future.

One PwC volunteer said: “It was a fantastic day and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Thank you so much for all the hard work, time and effort that you put into planning the day to ensure it ran smoothly. It gave us all the opportunity to learn more about the work Norwood does in the community while having fun and bonding as a team!”

Norwood – which provides a lifeline for families in crisis and lifelong support for people with learning disabilities – has seven charity retail stores across north London, Hertfordshire, Middlesex and Essex. Donations come from the local community as well as wholesalers, retailers and chain stores. The stores provide not only vital income for Norwood’s services, but they are often the first point of contact that the public has with the charity.

(For the record, Team Two won by the princely sum of £150 and they would like to say thank you very much to the person who bought the typewriter.)