Getting To Know You: Dion Taylor, CEO of the Snow & Rock Group

What do you currently do?
I am the CEO of the Snow+Rock Group which comprises Snow+Rock Sports a specialist snow sports and outdoor retailer, CycleSurgery and Runners Need, both specialist retailers in their field.

I am responsible for both the strategy and the day to day running of our business which consists of 41 individual fascias and 4 separate ecommerce sites.

Our core focus has always been to attract new and existing customers into our retail stores to provide them with excellent customer service and advice to ensure they get the right equipment and clothing for their chosen sport or leisure activity.

We take pride in employing end users that can excite customers about the activity they are going to participate in.

We were originally a focused bricks and mortar retailer but over the past few years we have been adapting our business strategy to become a truly multi-channel retailer.

I have a great senior management team which support me in our objectives to be the best multi location specialist retailer in our specific market sectors.

What is your inspiration in business?
In today’s world and especially in the current economic climate retail is incredibly challenging and a large section of the market seems to be focused just on price. As a specialist retailer we endeavour to be competitive on price however, we do aspire to giving people excellent customer service and providing them with the right kit to go out to mountains or simply commuting to work on their bike.

We also aspire to source exciting and exclusive product to provide our customers with a point of difference.

I feel I am very privileged to be running a business where the product we sell is stimulating and inspiring and encourages people to enjoy the outdoors and sport too.

Who do you admire?
I have a number of people I admire but the two that come to mind are Steve Jobs the founder and CEO of Apple, for his inspiration and the aptitude for the organisation to continually innovate and bring new product to the market that excites children to senior citizens.

The second person I admire is Sir Richard Branson for his ability to create an international brand which is almost a household name. He appears to do this from his hammock in the Caribbean.

Looking back, are there things you might have done differently?
To ensure when you grow your business you have all the necessary things in place so that you maintain the quality of the service and retail experience for your customers; we have put steps in place to ensure we offer the same quality of services across our 41 stores, as we did when we all worked together in our single store.

What defines your way of doing business?
Do it once and do it right.

What advice would you give to someone starting out?
Make sure you have a unique selling point for your business that will generally excite the consumer and that it is not just on price. To aspire to be a specialist, but also to be welcoming to a non-specialist consumer. You spend a long time at work so enjoy what you do.