Frances Hopes is head of marketing at The Company of Master Jewellers. She talks Austrian Alps, Louis Theroux and funny podcasts…
How many years have you worked in the jewellery sector and how did you get into the industry?
My first job in the jewellery industry was as production editor on an industry magazine in 2004. I have pretty much stayed in the trade ever since (apart from a sad 18 months in financial services) and first joined the CMJ 10 years ago.
What do you most enjoy about working in the industry?
I love the people – so many of them find that once they are in the trade they don’t leave. Also I have had the privilege of travelling to some incredible places and seeing some of the most beautiful jewellery.
What’s the most difficult part of your job?
The CMJ has such a wide range of members, from large multiples to single-store retailers, from international brands to designer-makers – it can be a challenge to support them and produce marketing material that is relevant.
What’s your most memorable moment in the industry to date?
When the CMJ won an award naming it as Service Supplier of the Year in 2021 – I was so proud of the whole team and it was amazing recognition for everything we did to try and support our members over the multiple lockdowns.
If you won the lottery, what one luxury item or experience would you buy?
I’d buy a chalet in the Austrian Alps and go away with a big rabble of my friends – I love skiing but haven’t been for a few years, so I’m desperate to get away once again.
if you could invite three people to a dinner party, who would they be?
Louis Theroux and Phoebe Waller-Bridge for the chat, and Tom Hardy for decoration (although I think his chat would be quite good too).
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
It’s only by saying ‘no’ sometimes that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.
What do you most enjoy doing outside of work?
Reading, gym classes, and being outdoors.
What was the last thing that made you laugh out loud?
I love listening to a podcast when I’m driving – I was having a bad day yesterday and listened to one that made me cry with laughter. Rest assured my driving was not impaired!
Tell us something about yourself that none of your colleagues know?
I’m a bit addicted to books – I rarely come home from town without having bought one and have read more than 50 over the course of last year.
Which other company or brand (inside or outside the industry) do you most admire and why?
I like small brands that have a powerful brand identity. Boston Tea Party, for example, is a small café chain that has a one-off local ethos at its heart – no two cafés look the same yet they have the same brand values running through them and the company as a whole does a lot to promote environmental initiatives, for example banning of single-use coffee cups.
What’s the first thing you do when you get into work in the morning?
Whether I’m working at home or in the office, the first thing I do is put the kettle on – I don’t function without caffeine.
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