Cleo has been Assistant Manager at Toolstation in Northwich for the past year but has been with the Travis Perkins Group for almost five. During that time, they have gradually made their way up the career ladder, from Customer Service Representative to Assistant Manager (AM), with the help of our Management Apprenticeship course.

Cleo identifies as non-binary. Stonewall describes non-binary as an umbrella term for people whose gender identity doesn’t sit comfortably with ‘man’ or ‘woman’. Non-binary identities are varied and can include people who identify with some aspects of binary identities, while others reject them entirely.

Diversity & Inclusion within the Travis Perkins Group
At Travis Perkins, we’re on a journey to becoming a truly inclusive employer, and with that, we want all of our employees to feel they can be their true selves at work. Cleo is part of our Proud Network and the Toolstation Belonging Board which empowers our LGBTQ+ community and allies, ensuring everyone is understood, respected, and valued for who they are, with a true feeling that they can be their authentic selves at work without fear or prejudice. They told us, ‘As I am a non-binary individual, it’s important for me to feel like I am part of a community within the workplace. I am a passionate LGBTQ+ advocate so I like to be involved with anything LGBTQ+.’

As we’re celebrating Pride Month in June, we spoke to Cleo about how their career has progressed within the Travis Perkins Group, and being comfortable as their true self at work. Read Cleo’s story:

What does your role involve and what do you most enjoy?
‘The main parts of my role are to serve the customers, put delivery away, stock take, clean, cash up, delegate jobs throughout the team and sort the management daily/monthly checks.

I enjoy the team I work with. My team is all really lovely and we gel together. Plus, I’m coming towards the end of a Level 3 Management Apprenticeship course. I have my end point assessment at the end of June. It involves learning more about management, operations and the business of Toolstation.’

Before joining us, what did you do?
‘When I left college, I went straight into customer service roles. I worked for a retailer and would answer phone calls and emails to customers of the health and beauty department. I worked there for about 4 years.

I then went to work for a small model kit company that sells lots of merchandise from different television shows and films. I would serve customers, paint model kits, and clean and handle their online social media accounts. I was there for a year before I moved to Toolstation so I built up some strong customer service skills.

I had a few reservations mostly because I identified as female at the time (I now identify as non-binary). I was worried that it was just going to be big male builders who came into the shop. I was very wrong though as I have met a lot of amazing customers from all sorts of backgrounds.’

Has your career progressed/developed within Toolstation?
‘Yes, very much so. When I first started I was a 20-hour-per-week Customer Service Representative. A year later I was asked to become a Senior Store Assistant/Keyholder. Whilst in this role I started a Level 2 Customer Service Apprenticehip course with Toolstation, for which I achieved a distinction. I then became a Supervisor halfway through my Level 2 course. I then applied for Assistant Manager when the previous AM left and I got the job.

I felt I was ready for the challenge of Assistant Manager due to becoming more responsible during the COVID-19 lockdown as the AM at the time was off isolating.’

Why and what has kept you working with Toolstation?
‘The people I work with are a huge factor. When I have met other people who are part of the Toolstation or Travis Perkins Group they have always been really friendly and nice. I think Toolstation is a really good place to work for people who want to progress and work hard in the construction industry and retail.

‘It’s a great atmosphere as you only have a small team with Toolstation. You are like a little family. It’s definitely a great job for people who like teamwork.’

We’re not like other companies in our industry, we want our LGBTQ+ colleagues and allies to feel empowered and we’re proud to set ourselves apart and foster inclusive, diverse teams throughout our entire Group.

How do you feel about Travis Perkins’ values and culture?
‘I really resonate with our ‘We’re better together’ value. This is because with Toolstation you are part of a small team so it’s a huge part of the everyday job.’

We’re making a difference within the Travis Perkins Group by truly living our values. They embody what our business lives and breathes, and they come to life in our everyday behaviours.

Join our open, welcoming and friendly community
If you want to work in an environment where you feel truly comfortable and happy, we may have something for you. Browse our jobs and apply today.