Following her recent appointment to the Executive Committee of the Association of Short-Term Lenders, we caught up with Sabinder Robinson-Sandhu to congratulate her and discuss what brought her to this point…
When did you join Avamore? What was your role?
I formally joined Avamore in April 2018 as Marketing Coordinator. Before that, between 2016-2017, I worked for the company via a small marketing agency and so got the opportunity to work for them in the really early days. When they decided to take things in-house, I jumped at the chance to join!
Why did you join Avamore? What were your initial thoughts of the company?
When I worked at the agency, Avamore stood out as a company I could see myself working at long term. They were very open to ideas, trusted my opinion – despite me being relatively young at the time – and were keen to get creative which isn’t always an option when working with B2B firms. At the time of joining, I also loved the idea of being able to work in a small business, play a key role in its growth and really carve out the marketing strategy. I am always focused on impact and being the 7th person to join the team I knew that there was a huge amount of value to be added early on.
How has your career progressed while you’ve been here?
I went from Marketing Coordinator to Marketing Manager and now head up both Operations and Marketing. My role has changed organically over the years. Operations is intrinsic to a business but it’s not always natural to recruit for the position while you’re growing. Often businesses get to a certain size and realise they need someone to lead operationally; that lag in identifying the requirement was a big opportunity for me!
What do you enjoy most about Avamore?
Avamore is by far the best business I have worked in. We have a really strong culture; there is no hierarchy, no egos and everyone is pulling in the same direction. The energy in the team is always great, I love our socials (the most recent sports day was a real highlight) but equally, enjoy that we all get our heads down and genuinely want to do a good job for ourselves, our teams, and the wider business.
What do you love most about your job?
I love the dynamic (and sometimes unpredictable) nature of my job. Whilst I enjoy the odd day to get on with my to do list I thrive most when there is lots going on and I get the opportunity to solve challenges for the benefit of the wider business. It’s also a job where at the end of most days, you can look back and know that you’ve added value which is what fulfils me the most.
If you could learn one skill, what would it be and why?
I’m told I am a terrible singer so it would be good to improve on that for the sake of anyone that has or will ever share a karaoke booth with me.
If you could choose another career what would it be and why?
I have always really liked the idea of being a hotel manager. Creating experiences is something I enjoy in my work and personal life so I think it would be a fun job. In retirement (which is a very long time away) I have often said I’d like to run a bed and breakfast!!
What do you hope to achieve with your ASTL appointment?
I am really keen to focus on engagement between the association and lender members. Now, more than ever, there is a need to create a sense of togetherness and I want to drive fresh and creative thinking to convey the ASTL’s core message whilst continuing to ensure that it remains the kitemark of quality in the specialist lending space.
What advice would you give someone looking to join Avamore?
Do it! I genuinely believe that we’re a really unique organisation, we provide a huge amount of opportunity to hard working people. My progression like many of my peers has been quick but Avamore has always been about rewarding good people regardless of background or experience.
How would you define success?
For me personally, success is building a life where you are not always looking to the next goal post, can appreciate what you have and how hard you’ve already worked to achieve it. I’m by no means someone that coasts but when you reach the point where you look around and think ‘I’m pretty happy with everything here’ for me, that’s success.
What is your greatest professional highlight?
There are two, in 2019, I was listed in Bridging & Commercial’s first top 35 under 35 feature and in the same year, I led on a creative marketing campaign which promoted our Part Complete Development product. The advertising concept hadn’t been rolled out before and the reaction we got on social media and in person was huge. It wasn’t just an advert, and it was nice to see that the work that went in didn’t go unnoticed.
Describe yourself in 3 words
Determined, proactive and creative.