Here at Xcite Car Leasing we believe that our success as a business is due to our incredible team, and we wanted to give you an insight into the team and the hard work that goes into arranging our leases.
Over the next couple of months, we’ll be focusing on key members of our team and taking you through a typical day in their life and what their role involves and how they help get you in your new lease car.
Today we’re starting with Spencer Blake one of our three Directors. Spencer is responsible for overseeing our Sales, Customer Service and Pricing and Marketing Teams.
Spencer is one of the founding three who started this company nearly 20 years ago with Tim and Simon. The trio decided to start their own company after working in the rental and leasing sector for one of the big names in the industry and seeing areas of opportunity that weren’t being taken up.
Another aim the friends had when establishing their own company was to give themselves, and then their employees, a better work life balance. This remains a core consideration within the business, especially as the way we work has changed due to the pandemic. As the team has expanded we’ve made sure we’re flexible and supportive of our employees to ensure they have a healthy work life balance.
The three directors each head up different departments within the business and Spencer is responsible for looking after three teams. These are our Customer Services, Sales and Marketing and Pricing departments, all of who are primarily focused on the Xcite Car Leasing brand, though the Customer Service Team also assist the Fleet Management Team.
Overseeing these three teams allows Spencer to focus on the leasing side of the business and so he has a comprehensive understanding of all the work that goes into getting you into a new lease car at a great price, as well as a wider overview of the industry and trends we see within it that allows him to make informed decisions for the business. You’ll see on our blog regular updates from Spencer on the industry and what he has seen and expects to see in the near future.
BeforeXcite Car Leasing
Before we started the company I went straight from college into the Enterprise Rent A Car graduate training programme. At the time Enterprise was relatively new in the UK and it was a great opportunity for me to help build the business in the South. I spent 7 years there working my way up from trainee to area manager and it was from there I made the jump with Tim and Simon to set up our own company.
Setting Up Xcite Car Leasing
I wanted a bit more control over my own destiny and had always fancied being my own boss so for me setting up a new company was a way for me to achieve this.
In my time with Enterprise I had become friends with both Tim and Simon who also worked for the business and they’re now my fellow directors. They were also looking for similar independence and we decided to start a business that would provide our staff and customers with a better experience.
When we set up the business we chose to do so in the middle of where we lived which was Wilton. Wilton is the ancient capital of Wessex which was our inspiration for the name Wessex Fleet. We remained in Wilton for eighteen years only moving earlier this year to Salisbury city centre, so the name also reflects part of our history in the county now too.
My typical working day has the alarm going off at 6.50 am so I can wake up and get the kids up as well. Since the lockdown began I’ve added a 30-minute Joe Wicks HIIT workout that I’ll do as soon as the kids are up. Then it’s shower, change and breakfast with the all important first coffee of the day before work.
Once I log on then I can get so engrossed in the day that often it’s lunchtime before I realise. I do struggle with making sure I take a lunch break and typically I’ll have a sandwich at my desk while I work. However, in the last year we’ve taken shared ownership of a dog so on the occasions when she’s with us it’s a great excuse to have half an hour in the fresh air and just process the events of the days so far and set me up for the afternoon. A walk can also help me take a step back if I’m involved in a particularly challenging task and I can come back with a fresh mind and see the problem with new clarity.
Each day looks a little different for me which I enjoy as it never feels monotonous. Much of my day is now spent on the phone, email and video calls. I’m still actively involved in every area of our business so the role itself and each day is very varied. My day is often dictated by scheduled calls checking in with one of the teams whether that be Marketing, Procurement, Sales or Customer Services to ensure all is running smoothly.
We operate in a market that is constantly changing so in the current climate with supply constraints it has been paramount that we have vehicles available to sell, we strive to provide our customers with the very best deals, and this means we have to make sure we are in constant communication on a daily basis with manufacturers, dealers and funders to put together market-leading offers
Working from Home
I live just over an hour away from the office, so losing the 2 ½ hours a day commute has certainly helped me address the work-life balance. I’m around in the mornings to see the girls off to school, and already at home when they come home.
The transition to working from home has been made all the easier by the great team I have around me. It’s been fantastic to see that with the people we have, supported by the right tech, our business has continued to outperform against target and our customers have continued to be looked after and supported.
One of the challenges I have encountered is that I’ve always had a bit of a sweet tooth, so I try very hard to avoid the pull of the biscuit tin when I make a tea or coffee at home.
Once restrictions were lifted we have introduced a hybrid model where each of our departments is in one day a week so that the teams are able to connect in person which I think promotes better working relationships. Our offices are open every day though so that the members of staff who want to be in more regularly can be as we know working from home isn’t as easy for everyone.
Life Outside Xcite Car Leasing
Spending time with my family is very important to me and I love spending time with my wife and our daughters. During the summer our favourite activities include walking our dog and paddleboarding at the beach.
I’m also a big sports fan so enjoy watching Southampton FC in the football season and the Hampshire Hawks cricket team during the summer. Watching the football is supposed to be a time to unwind and relax but being a Southampton fan there’s never too much of that.
If I wasn’t working here then I would have loved to race cars. I’m not sure I would have been good enough to make a living from it but I would have loved to try.
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