Meet Wayne and Tania

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Our ultimate aim will be to help our teams build great pharmacies that deliver professional health and beauty advice to our customers.

 

 

 

Tell us about yourselves …

Gee, that’s a hard question … where do we start? OK, Tania and I have worked in, managed and owned pharmacies for in excess of 30 years.

We were born in Perth, WA, where we have spent the majority of our lives, but we have a strong bond with our Italian family heritage.

We have 4 beautiful children ranging in age from 8 through to 19 (2 younger boys and two older daughters) and every decision we make every day is about them.

Do you own other pharmacies?

We own two pharmacies and manage two others. One of them is a Priceline store, so we know that brand well. The other 3 belong to a small franchise group that we own and run called Savingsplus Chemist. At Savingsplus Chemist our motto is ‘Service, Advice, Range and Price’, and that pretty much sums up what we believe our pharmacies should offer to our customers.

Excellent Service, Professional Advice and a Great Range of Health and Beauty products at an everyday low price. That is our promise to our customers, and our teams of dedicated health professionals work very hard to make sure that we deliver on that promise, every day, in every store.

Will you be keeping all of the staff here in Armidale?

Absolutely! We’ve bought businesses before, and it always amazes us how people assume that we are going to march into town with a bus load full of new staff and change everything.

We have often been asked  why we don’t put up ‘Under New Management’ signs when we buy a business, and the reality is that we believe that people who do that assume that the customers are dissatisfied with the way that business has been run already.

We have no way of knowing whether that is true or not and until we start talking with our customers and staff about their experiences in-store, we would be foolish to assume it.

So our business philosophy is really very, very simple: don’t assume you know the answer until you have asked the question, and ‘If it isn’t broken, don’t try to fix it’.

We’ll ask lots and lots of questions, and we’ll really listen to the answers – because that’s the only way of finding out what our customers really want. We’ll keep what’s working, tweak what needs some attention and work with our teams to change those things that aren’t.

Our ultimate aim will be to help our teams build great pharmacies that deliver professional health and beauty advice to our customers.

How do you plan to juggle the running of all seven pharmacies?

I learnt how to juggle when I turned 40. Tania organised for our family to spend a week in Club Med Bali and every day without fail at 10am, I would go down to the circus school with my two daughters, determined to learn how to juggle before I went home.

I’ve had two epiphanies in my life, and this was truly one of them. At the time, Tania and I were running two pharmacies, working too many hours to count and slowly forgetting about all of the reasons why we ever decided to get involved in pharmacy in the first place. We were burnt out and in need of a new strategy.

Anyway, after 3 days of struggling to learn how to juggle by myself, one of the circus school guys, who must have either felt sorry for me or just couldn’t stand to be tormented by my insipid efforts any longer, came over to me and said these 4 simple words that changed my life: “Let me help you”.

For the next 3 hours he demonstrated and explained, coaxed and encouraged, taught and re-taught, persisted and persevered until finally, at the age of 40, I learnt how to juggle.

We all need a little help, in everything that we do, and that’s the philosophy we take with us in the management of our businesses.

So to get back to your original question, the one about juggling, the answer is that we don’t plan to juggle the running of all seven pharmacies.

We tried that when we had two pharmacies, and it didn’t work. In a lot of ways now, we see our role as being similar to that of the circus school instructor. We find great people, and Armidale certainly has many of those, and we say, “Let me help you”.

We give them the benefit of our knowledge and experience in how to run pharmacies and we say, “Let me help you become great at what you do”. That way, we all win.

What excites you about this new business venture?

The people; it’s always about the people. The people you work with, the people you meet and the people you can help in some small way. Armidale is a fabulous city, and everyone we meet is amazingly friendly.

 

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