Inside ALNO: What Inspires the Designers?
Mike Richards has been Showroom Manager of Bradburys of Exeter since 2012, and has worked at the showroom for 15 years.
Like many kitchen designers, despite his long career of over 30 years, Mike did not originally have any plans to join the kitchen industry.
“I actually used to sell carpets, and when someone in the kitchen department left the company, I was asked to fill in as cover…the rest, as they say, is history!”
From there, Mike continued to impress, going on to design kitchens for various UK-based kitchen companies.
In 2001, based on recommendation from a mutual business associate, Mike was headhunted by Andy Bradbury, who asked him to join the team at Bradburys. Mike says: “I was very proud, and completely bowled over by the ALNO products and Bradburys showroom.”
Andy Bradbury sadly passed away in 2014, and Mike became Showroom Manager making him responsible for designing kitchens, showroom development and organising events – particularly the Devon Home Cook of the Year, which the showroom has hosted three years running.
Mike says: “I always admired Andy for his guidance and ethos of quality and customer care, and now, in his memory, it’s something we strive to continue.”
As well as being inspired to continue the work that Andy started, in-keeping with the ALNO tradition of being ahead of the curve and evolving with the times, Mike says: “For me, it’s important to keep an open mind and embrace new technology and ideas.”
Mike also stresses the importance of listening to the customer when designing their kitchen: “It might sound simple, but in all the excitement of designing a new kitchen, it’s easy to get carried away with your own ideas. Often, the customer will have interesting input, and when coupled with our expertise, results in the client getting their dream kitchen, while helping to build the working relationships, through which our business is built upon.”
Why not visit Bradburys of Exeter and see how Mike can work with you to create the kitchen of your dreams?
Bradburys of Exeter
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