A week in the life of… Shehbaz Shaikh, REDTAG’s chief retail officer

Shaikh travels once every week to meet up with other GCC teams



Sunday

My week begins with a quiet breakfast with my wife after sending the kids to school. I reach the office by 9am to crack on with the busy schedule for the day. I review the weekly trading calendar, the previous week’s events and the performance chart before holding a trading meeting with the team. We discuss with the heads of each country where we operate how the week was in their respective markets and aim to understand what marketing, customer relationship management, buying and human resources plans they have for the upcoming weeks. I leave the office at 7.30pm for a two-hour paddle tennis session with my friends.

Monday

Most of today is dedicated to meeting agencies but I start with a quick catch up with the corporate retail operations team. We discuss the implementations decided on Sunday and review sales strength in each market. In the afternoon, I meet the creative and communications agencies for status meetings, to assess recent campaigns and plan future ones. Today is also my press interaction day, when I hold interviews, answer queries, and review press activities. I also pay a surprise visit to some of the REDTAG stores across the UAE to check how they function on a daily basis and address any concerns of the teams. After work, I take my family for dinner in one of our favourite restaurants.

Tuesday

Today begins with another round of meetings where details of projected plans and their implementation strategies are discussed with the finance, HR, and planning teams. This helps us to actualise our corporate goals and objectives. In the second half of the day I meet with the logistics team and strategise on getting new products for the company. After work, I end the day with another round of paddle tennis.

Wednesday

Wednesdays are often stressful, so I hit the gym early in order to gain the momentum needed to face any unforeseen challenges. Every week I visit another country in the GCC and by 7am I am at Terminal 3 of Dubai International Airport to board a flight to Bahrain. This week is a special one as it is the first after the launch of our new collection with Arab superstar Cyrine AbdelNour. I am excited to hear the team’s feedback and progress since then.

Spending time with each country’s team is crucial for any business, and fashion retail is not an exception. I share ideas with them on ways to understand customer profiles and also look at new business expansion in the country. I also interact with the staff in the store to get customer feedback. At night I take the country’s team out, to recognise and reinforce the achievers, and motivate the challenged.

Thursday

At 9am I visit the remaining stores, meet the country head and get updates on the stock. In the afternoon I drive to the airport to take my flight back home and spend the weekend with my family. At night, my wife and I go to our favourite restaurant for dinner before heading to the cinema for a blockbuster movie.

Friday

Fridays are always more relaxed and laid back, and I share it with my family and friends. I start by going to Jumeirah Beach with my friends to play volleyball, taking the kids along. After Friday prayers I have a nap before taking the kids for a go-karting session later in the afternoon. This is followed by a game of cricket that goes on until sunset. To crown it all, I go out with my best friends to shake off my stress from the working week.

Saturday

Today we host a guest, and after a brunch in the garden I take them on a tour of Dubai’s main landmarks such as Burj Khalifa, the Palm Jumeirah and the Creek. We top it all off with a fun session at water park Wild Wadi.