Interview: Lorraine Fitzpatrick
Thank goodness Lorraine Fitzpatrick didn’t end up as a dental technologist! One of the brightest, most positive, and customer-focused people we know would have been sorely missed in our industry.
Read Lorraine’s story, including who has inspired her and why she’s not wearing lab coats, in our latest Industry Women interview.
Please provide your name, job title and company name.
Lorraine Fitzpatrick, National Key Accounts Manager, FMI Building Innovation
How long have you spent in your current position?
What job did you have before your current role?
Partnership Manager at GIB (Winstone Wallboards). I was there for eight years.
To date, what has been your career highlight?
It sounds cliché, but to be honest there are too many to mention. When you are passionate about the industry and the people that work within our industry, every day is filled with highlights.
Who have you admired or learnt from the most in your career and why?
I had an amazing mentor at GIB who is truly a legend in the industry, Jerry Hirst. He gave me the tools to understand what it means to be truly customer leading, by listening, observing, and ultimately being an extension of your customer’s business. We have to earn the right to supply by being one step ahead of the competitor, by knowing your customer, and aligning strategies.
Are you doing what you thought you’d be doing when you were younger? If not, what type of job did you expect you would have?
No, I wanted to be a dental technologist. In hindsight, I can 100% confirm I would have been terrible at it! Stuck in a laboratory all day would not have suited me at all. Thank goodness life had other plans for me.
What do you think is the most important quality or skill you need to succeed in your current role?
You need to be constantly looking for step changes to improve your offer to the customer. Instead of focusing on the competition I focus on the customer. Also, persistence and enjoyment in everything I do.
What’s one thing you hope to achieve this year, either at work or in your personal life?
The current environment with COVID 19 is unprecedented and there continues to be challenges for people and businesses. My goal is to spend more time listening to people, being empathetic and learning from others so we can respond positively and quickly to change.
Do you have any tips or advice for those just starting out in the industry?
Network, network and do more networking! People are the life blood of the industry and are welcoming if you put yourself out there.