Every month we like to focus on one of our brilliant Senior Move Managers and why they love what they do. They are what makes our service so special. They bring warmth, sensitivity, and common sense when it comes to supporting an older person with their home move.
Based in the South East, Heidi has been one of the backbones of our support for several years. She regularly goes the ‘extra mile’ to find a solution for a client.
Many thanks Heidi for all you do when supporting one of our clients – your help is very much appreciated by all!!
1. What is your favourite part of working as a Senior Move Manager?
It is the combination of establishing a trusting relationship and problem solving that makes it the best occupation ever. I love getting to know my clients on a personal level and then tailoring the process to their specific needs and wishes with the result of having made a real difference in their lives and lifestyle.
2. What part of your work do you find the hardest?
A huge part of the role is managing expectations with regards to the value of their belongings. Sentimental value of an item often leads to the perception that an item has the same monetary value, which of course it has not. If an auctioneer and even a charity is not interested in a mahogany display cabinet, I often have to go to unusual lengths to find an appropriate home that will make my client happy.
3. What did you do before becoming a SMM?
I studied journalism and Afrikaans Literature and have a teacher’s diploma in drama. I initially taught drama and directed a few plays whilst working at the university. In my mid-twenties I worked in educational publishing and then in advertising as a writer on Nando’s and BMW accounts, amongst other smaller ones. Whilst raising children I owned a linen and soft furnishings business which gave me some experience in interior design. In 2011 Nicki Munns and I started an organising company, All Organised, and since April 2017 we have been partners of The Senior Move Partnership.
4. What misconceptions do people have about our work?
To most people a Senior Move Manager is a role they have never heard of, and it is important to explain exactly what it entails when meeting a client for the first time. Some of my clients have to be assured that I do not take control of their move out of their hands but rather facilitate their wishes as far as possible.
5. If you get a free moment, what do you do to unwind?
I have been a keen potter for the past forty years and have a little studio at home. I also love walking my pair of Labradors and cooking for family and friends.
6. What’s the most unique request you have dealt with for a client and how did you do so? There have been a few over the years.
I recently helped clients move into an apartment on the fifth floor of a development. Their very heavy and extremely expensive sideboard wouldn’t fit in the lift and couldn’t be carried up the stairs, so I organised for it to be taken up the outside of the building over the balcony, by a furniture lift. We also had a client who had so many luxury vintage handbags and scarves that she had collected over the years that my business partner and I got a stall at a local vintage fair and sold them on her behalf.