‘Am dram’ enthusiast John runs Aqua Spa Supplies, an accessories business supplying hot tub cover lifters and steps (pun intended) to trade and retail customers, with the odd rubber duck thrown in for good measure…
HOW AND WHEN DID YOU GET INVOLVED IN THE INDUSTRY?
I got involved in 2008 when I was about four stone lighter, fresh-faced and felt I could take on the world. Now I’m overweight with crippling back pain, it’s a great business to be in though right?
DESCRIBE YOUR TYPICAL WORKING DAY?
I roll in about 5am, and after 15 coffees and 40 Benson and Hedges I can begin to tackle the day, I then have breakfast around 8am, then another break about 10, then a cheeky nap around 11:30 then by 12:15 the lunch wagon arrives. I won’t lie, everything tends to be a bit of a blur after about 2pm. But in all seriousness, I will spend the day on the phone drumming up new business and finding new ways of developing the company. Occasionally I’ll shout at the lad in the warehouse, not because he’s done anything wrong but it wakes him up.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?
I love seeing boxes of stock go out the door ready to be delivered, I get a satisfaction in thinking “wow we are doing really well” every day, that and the flexibility, mixed with introducing new products to our client base. I don’t like to be bored but fortunately you don’t get a chance.
HOW DO YOU SEE THE MARKET EVOLVING BOTH SHORT AND LONG TERM?
A bit like the car industry, the hot tub markets seem to get bigger each year and there is always something new and exciting happening. Long term, well, if there isn’t a spa that can’t make you Gin and Tonic whilst you wait by at least 2025 I may have to re-evaluate my current position!
WHAT’S THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOU HAVE BEEN GIVEN? AND BY WHOM?
Someone once said to me that “everyone’s trying to screw you, but you should be the one to decide for how long”. That was probably some industry lifer whilst drunk at a trade show. But in a strange way it’s always stuck with me.
WHO WOULD BE YOUR THREE GUESTS AT YOUR DREAM DINNER PARTY?
British comic actor Peter Butterworth, famous for his bumbling roles in the Carry On Films. I often think I’m a bit like him.
Hollywood actor Nicolas Cage, whether you love him or hate him there is no one else like him.
Singer/Songwriter Tom Bailey, lead singer of the 80’s pop trio the Thompson Twins. Go ahead laugh I don’t care.
HOW DO YOU PREFER QUALITY TIME OUTSIDE OF WORK?
I do a lot of amateur theatre so that keeps me busy, it’s also a little world of escapism so for those nights on stage you can be someone completely different which really helps you unwind. One of my biggest hobbies though is collecting vinyl, I have done for years and I have just shy of 3000 records in my collection.
ANY CLAIMS TO FAME?
I once kissed a girl in Coco’s nightclub in Camden in 200. I never got her name or number but a few months later I was convinced it was Adele after seeing her interviewed on TV, maybe all those dreary songs are about me, the one that got away. Also, Vanessa Feltz once told me to F off outside a Starbucks, I didn’t try to kiss her, honest!
I GRANT YOU ONE WISH FOR YOUR BUSINESS… WHAT WILL IT BE?
Guaranteed continued success, so that my family can be secure and safe once I pop off this mortal coil.