Derby College and Local Retailers Embrace Queen of Shops

Derby College has helped local retailers at the McArthur Glen Designer Outlet enhance their sales and customer service skills.

Derby, United Kingdom, April 22, 2011 --( Retail staff at McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet have enhanced their sales and customer service skills through a special masterclass devised by "Queen of Shops" Mary Portas and the National Skills Academy for Retail.

A group of 32 store representatives from the designer outlet attended the masterclass taken from the Mary Portas Guide to Successful Retailing.

The course, run by Derby College on behalf of the Derby Retail Skills Shop, has been designed to teach retailers how to deliver a better experience for consumers based on the hints and tips that Mary Portas imparts through her hit Channel 4 television show "Secret Shopper."

Brands including Aquascutum, Bench, Camille, Christy, Designer Kidz, Next Outlet, Nike Factory Outlet, Pavers, Petroleum, Phase Eight, Reebok, Revlon, Sole Trader, Starbucks, Thorntons and Whittards were all represented at the masterclass held at the East Midlands Designer Outlet.

The session began by analysing the challenges that retailers face and identifying the different selling styles and shopper types, before the trainer advised on the ways in which to instill a great service culture, using real-life insight and best-practice examples.

Derby Retail Shop Manager Richard Page explained: “Derby Retail Skills Shop, of which Derby College is a lead partner, is part of the National Skills Academy for Retail which has worked closely with Mary Portas to devise the training programme for retailers large and small.

“The selling and service skills masterclass is one of seven different interactive workshops that support retailers to improve all aspects of their business and increase their efficiency and profitability.”

McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet Retail Manager Simon Revill added: “We pride ourselves on offering a great customer shopping experience, and are always seeking innovative skills training to ensure that the retail teams meeting customers face to face have the knowledge and confidence to fulfill that ambition.”

Hollie West, Supervisor, for Bench at the East Midlands Designer Outlet, concluded: “I thoroughly enjoyed the course and overall experience. I have learned so much, I have already planned a team training session to share the key learning points with the whole team.”

For more information on the Mary Portas Guide to Successful Retailing or any other training needs, contact the Derby Retail Skills Shop on 01332 387479 or

Media enquiries:
Sarah Jenkin-Jones, PR Officer, Derby College, Tel: 07951 945 665;

Derby College
Sarah Jenkin-Jones
01332 387426