A day in my working life, an occasional series providing an insight into how entrepreneurs spend a typical working day. This week, Charlie Purdie from Cocoface.
We started with a simple aim to make real coconut water easier for Londoners to get hold of. We’d been travelling and had coconuts on the beach, but cracking open a fresh young Nam Hom coconut in London? Now that’s real pleasure!
I remember a Thai tourist coming up to me at our market stall on Oxford Street asking me if we put something in it? It taste so sweet they said; it dawned on me, no one in Thailand had thought about putting one in the fridge for a month before drinking it. That must be why our coconuts taste so good.
Cocoface is a rapidly growing importer and producer of quality coconut products. Our business sits across wholesale distribution and a direct to consumer e-commerce platform, delivering a one-off and subscription service to coconutters all across the UK.
The idea of a typical day is not in the nature of an entrepreneur, as the variety and challenges that running a business offers is part of why we chose to do what we do.
7:00 – 8:30: I like to roll out of bed and hit the park for some jogging and sprints. I think it’s important to remain connected to nature as much as you can and running around the local park track is grounding, and teaches you that nothing ever stays still. You move you adapt or you die. It’s at these moments my head is clearest and I’m inspired to tackle the day ahead.
8:30-10:00: Once I’m showered and watered it’s time look at the goals I’d like to achieve for the day. I like using the kitchen table at home for this as it gets good light and is quiet. I’ll answer any pressing communication and pass off tasks or problem solve with the specific teams to help deliver on any pressing matters. All the while enjoying hydrating with a fresh coconut. Yum!
10:00: Head to HQ. Here I like to check in with our logistics and fulfilment teams to see how the overnight orders are doing. We receive containers and move pallets of product, so it’s important that we stay on top of our wholesale customer orders and manage our inventory efficiently. Our account handlers are constantly tweaking their projections – sometimes as much as three months in advance – so we can stay in stock with the freshest product at all times.
11:00: I check in on our social channels. We primarily use Instagram and Twitter to propagate our brand values or establish a feedback loop with our customers. Today we’re sending out samples to our social media panel who have volunteered to produce flavourings for our new snack range. They will document there experience and collate details of their recipes. We use this data to inform our product development efforts and build brand loyalty.
11:30: Packaging Design. We like to keep all our design In-house, as this means we have a lot more flexibility in how our product looks and feels. We all really enjoy the creative process and we’re often asking opinions from our friends or their kids as insight is often found in unlikely places.
13:00: Lunch is probably one of the most important meals of the day. We’re lucky as our office isn’t close to grab-and-go places so often someone prepares something for all of us to share. These moments are great as we’re talking more as friends sharing a meal rather than business colleagues. Some of the best solutions have been conceived here!
15:00: Meeting with a new stockist. We like to be out on the road as much as possible as sales are the life and blood of any new business. We have a little grab back loaded with our products but everyone loves when we pull out our cleaver and hack open a coconut!
17:00 Laptop time entails a quick review of the day’s emails where I deal with anything that needs a longer response. I also have a look at any reviews that have come through our online channels. Often glowing but sometimes rather odd, recently there’s been some concern for the welfare of the the monkeys that we use to pick our nuts. Explaining that Nam Hom are dwarf palms and can be picked by hand by humans is all part of the education. Before I leave I like to review the day’s orders and spend some time reconciling payments – the modern day equivalent of counting your money.
18:00: We often have an event or pop -up we’re involved in. As our business has grown it’s been important to maintain our consumer interactions as it’s the perfect way to sample new products and get immediate feedback on new developments, such as: ‘How well does that vodka go with this coconut?’
For further information please visit: www.cocoface.com