Hamilton Our Town has a new manager – Malcolm Thomas-Harley. We caught up with him to discover more for this introductory profile …
Malcolm is from Glasgow and has spent many years working in retail.
He arrives in Hamilton at one of the most challenging of times for the town and its businesses, but that does not phase him in taking on the role.
He describes himself as a “people person” with a love of “football, running and music” adding: “My time in retail and hospitality has made me acutely aware of all that so many businesses are facing right now.” His retail CV includes area and operational roles with WHSmith, M&S and Costa Coffee – and that time has given him experience in leadership and partner relationship management.
“I have overseen new retail and hospitality store openings, undertaken project management and much more.” Looking at Hamilton, Malcolm says: “The biggest challenge that many are facing is the rapid change in customer behaviour from bricks and mortar to online platforms.” He adds: “That has all been accelerated by COVID-19, but there are also great opportunities for our businesses to tap into a growing trend of people who want to shop locally … who are passionate about supporting their home town. That gives us all an exciting opportunity to deliver positive change for the town and our community.”
He recognises Hamilton BID’s diversity of offering, saying: “There’s an incredibly wide range of fantastic and unique businesses that sit alongside the high street brand names.”
Much of his experience has been in regional management – and, as he explains, that requires listening: “Listening to and understanding what businesses need is key. I look forward to working side by side with the BID’s levy payers. I want to fight hard to deliver for the business improvement district – to make sure Hamilton is front and centre in customers’ minds – not only for the all-important Christmas season but into the year ahead.”
As one of the first steps in Malcolm’s arrival, he has instigated the launch of Hamilton Our Town’s YouTube channel. This is now live and is already featuring video content that showcases the town’s businesses. The first video is a welcome message from Malcolm that includes a thank you to his predecessor, Gareth Walker. Malcolm concludes: “Gareth has done a wonderful job as Hamilton Our Town’s manager. I have thoroughly enjoyed meeting him and spending time with him in my first week – getting to walk the town, to appreciate the history and to understand some of the challenges ahead. I wish him every happiness in his retirement.”
If you’d like to contact Malcolm, you can email him via this link.
Thanks for reading!