In Conversation with Carolyn Mitchell – One Year Later
It’s been twelve months since Carolyn Mitchell took on her role as Sales and Marketing Director at Hypnos Contract Beds, and no one could have predicted the turbulent year the hospitality sector has endured. As the first trade shows in over a year recommence, we thought we’d catch up to see what to expect from Hypnos Contract Beds.
Read our 2020 interview with Carolyn here
How would you describe your first year at Hypnos Contract Beds?
I believe we have all, without exception, faced a challenging time throughout the last 18 months, and my journey has been no different. I am proud to have worked alongside the Hypnos team during this time as communities, teams and family have never been so important. Working together and supporting each other makes huge difference, in the work place as well as at home.
Hypnos’ sales have remained exceptionally busy throughout the period across all sectors, so for me personally, it has been a fast track induction to all areas of the business, with challenges across manufacturing, operations, and supply chain during a disruptive time. As an example, the non-woven fabric used to produce pocket springs for mattresses is the same product used in PPE, and supply was, and still is, being diverted to the medical sector.
It was clear within my first few weeks in August last year, that the impact of COVID was going to be complex and far reaching, throughout all contract interior sectors, with no product category unaffected. I think we all have learnt in one year what would normally have taken us many more, not just how to lead and navigate in an upside down world, but about finding new forward thinking ways to get the job done.
Hypnos’ clients are incredibly loyal to the brand, we have supported each other through a complex time. The results of these enduring partnerships continue, together we have delivered some amazing projects, including the newly opened Pan Pacific Hotel in London.
What do we expect to see from Hypnos and the first trade shows this autumn?
Comfort with Integrity is our mantra at Hypnos and as market leaders we will be strengthening our already successful contract product portfolio with a greater emphasis on the environment and recyclability with the introduction of the “ Origins Hospitality Collection” uniquely designed with natural and sustainable materials that are fully traceable. I’m in the throes of organising the photoshoot as we speak, and very excited to share our first product launch at “The Independent Hotel” show in October, followed closely by our second in the series at the “HIX” show in November.
What is the business outlook for the UK contract sector?
Despite the challenges our clients have faced in the hospitality sector, we are all aware of the opportunities that exist to rebuild our industry. Many of us are rediscovering the beauty of the British Isles, and we are seeing that “staycations” are driving the sector to recovery – the new Cult Hotel in Cheltenham is a great example of this . Whilst business travel is still limited, there is a growing confidence in slowly re-establishing real life human connections, I think we are all excited for that, as we learn to live and work in this new world. Its apparent that HCB core values of delivering comfort with integrity resonates more than ever in this post pandemic world with our clients. Many businesses are also now navigating the post BREXIT reality. Hypnos manufacture in the UK so is well placed to service our UK clients; at the same time our forward planning has ensured that we remain a truly global brand. We believe sleep shouldn’t cost our clients the earth, so we work closely with our network of International manufacturing partners to ensure we have a seamless supply chain to any location worldwide, whilst also reducing our carbon footprint. Hypnos were the first carbon neutral bedmaker in the world – something we achieved over a decade ago. Being the first, to lead such positive innovation remains at the heart of what we do.
What differentiates Hypnos Contract Beds?
Our people and our brand values; the Hypnos brand has a clear defining purpose, “comfort with integrity” – it is not a mere strap line, it underlines everything we do and why we do it. As a family owned business and Royal Warrant Holder, Hypnos is committed to making beds in a way that can be enjoyed by generations to come. Over 100 years of knowledge and passion in design and craftsmanship go into making the most comfortable, stylish, and sustainable beds in the world. Last year we were delighted to presented The Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development, and I’m still just as excited as the day I joined, to be on this journey at Hypnos Contract Beds.
Anything else in the pipeline you can share?
Well, we have a lot happening with launching a new collection of Origins Hospitality mattresses and everything that goes with that. At the same time, we want to promote sustainability beyond what we do – we believe that new developments should meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. So, we will be launching a new initiative to encourage the contract sector as a whole to celebrate best practice around sustainability. In the meantime, I’m delighted to report that Hypnos, has been awarded The Sustainability Award by the National Bed Federation, for its outstanding commitment to sustainable design and sustainable business operation for more than a decade.
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