AN AWARD-winning retail manager is masterminding the expansion of a chain of hospice shops.
Phyllis Jones, 60, retail manager for St Asaph-based St Kentigern Hospice, was last year named as the Help the Hospices retail staff member of the year.
The mother of two and grandmother of three has increased the number of hospice shops from eight to 12 while the turnover has increased by 300 per cent.
She's now overseeing the opening of two new shops - one in Colwyn Bay and the other in Holywell - which are expanding by moving to bigger and better premises.
The eight-bed in patient hospice in St Asaph has day care facilities and provides unparalleled care for those with life-threatening and terminal illness, but has to rely on 80 per cent of its income from the generous donations of the public.
Phyllis started working for St Kentigern eight years ago after being acting deputy manager at Morrison’s in Rhyl.
She now heads a 260-strong army of volunteers and a small team of paid staff.
She said: “We identified that we needed a central distribution centre so we could save the clothes between the seasons, and supply the shops from the depot.
“Now we can target various shops in different areas to suit their community.
“After we brought that system in it made a huge difference in sales.
“I think they were looking for somebody who had made a difference, come up with new ideas, and we’re always looking for new ideas.
“You can’t stand still. You’ve got to evolve all of the time.
“I think because I didn’t have the managers I stood out, because we’re succeeding, we’re trading up year on year without managers so it’s getting people to work for you.
“I’m a people person.
“I do my best, and I think what you need to do in any job is to make a difference.”