Staff Q&A: A brief encounter with… Justin Mackenzie

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Here at CDS, we’re incredibly proud of our 170-strong team – after all, they’re the ones who make all the comms magic happen.

That’s why, each month, we’re giving our blog readers the chance to get to know each member of the CDS family, in our employee Q&A series.

Next up in the hot seat, it’s Ministry of Defence account manager, Justin Mackenzie. With just 10 minutes on the clock, let’s go…

1. Sum up your role at CDS in one sentence:

I manage the team responsible for servicing our print management contract with the Ministry of Defence.

2. What’s your favourite thing about your job?

The variety. I am never sure what each day will bring, one minute you are working on a leaflet, the next it’s a flag for a parachute display team — yes I am speaking from experience!  

3. How did you become an account manager? 

I’ve been in this role for over 20 years now, although the contract has been with different organisations, I’m on my second stint with CDS – and hoping to extend it at the end of this year. I fell into the job completely by accident as my degree is in Microbiology!

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4. What drew you towards choosing CDS as an employer?

It was a TUPE transfer. However, after initially leaving CDS in 2012, I always knew I wanted to come back. CDS has a unique, almost family vibe – completely distinct from any other company I’ve worked for.

5. Describe the CDS ethos in just three words:

Co-operative, innovative, energetic. 

6. What’s been your favourite project so far and why? 

We had a successful campaign of producing Covid-19 signage and display material last summer. A competitor had beaten us to the punch in distributing a catalogue, but we targeted key customers with an offering that showed better value for money. We generated a lot of work, at a time when more traditional orders were very thin on the ground.

7. And, which brand would you love to work on a comms project with?

I’d love to work with the British Army Recruiting Group, I think we could do some great things together! 

8. Complete this sentence: For businesses, employing an effective communications strategy means…

…considering the best methods for reaching your target audience. It’s rarely a one-size-fits-all situation, and the solution may be something that you never considered before.

9. For a bit of fun, if CDS were a variety of biscuit, which would it be and why? 

A Romany Cream, because not everyone has tried them but if you did, you’d like them! 

10. Finally, if you could give one piece of advice to your 10-year-old self, what would it be?

Don’t sell off your comics and vinyl! 

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