Naomi Peel moved from department store retail management to a MA Publishing degree at Kingston University where she developed an interest in data and the business and market analysis area of publishing. Having gone on to work at Nielsen Book Research as a Sales and Account Executive she is now a Sales Analyst for Abrams & Chronicle Books, the European arm of acclaimed publishing houses Abrams, based in New York, and Chronicle Books, based in San Francisco.
I leave with my current read in hand to start my commute. Thankfully I live a stone’s throw from my local station and on a good day (South West Trains ensure they’re not all good) I get into Waterloo at around 8:30 and walk to the bus stop to get to Farringdon. I’m really not a morning person and I find the orderly, if very long queue for my bus reassuring.
I get to the office and check my emails for any that have come in from our American publishers overnight. After categorising or filing them accordingly I head to the kitchen to make my first coffee of the day. We are an office of tea drinkers and I’ll likely pick up a round or two later in the day.
9:05-5:00 – LOTS AND LOTS OF EXCEL SPREADSHEETS – details below:
Coffee made and now firmly ensconced at my desk I start with the first task of the day. Depending on the day of the week my mornings are usually made up of collecting data from a variety of sources to update our internal sales and stock reporting to circulate to sales and our publishers. I’ll analyse the detail of these reports and add jobs to my list accordingly. These can include comparable title gap analyses or delving a little deeper into specific account or sector to compare year on year data.
My manager, the Director of Finance & Operations, and I meet to discuss what I’ve been working on and any projects he wants me to start. At this time of year there’s lots of budgeting work to be done and I’ve been supporting with that by analysing backlist and frontlist trends as well as seasonal and title level analysis.
Lunchtime varies depending on how hungry I am. I try and bring lunch in every day but when I don’t there is a huge range of delicious options near the office. Within a five minute walk we have 2 food markets with every cuisine you can imagine. I’m a big fan of the local Ghanaian curry and plantain or, now that the cold weather is here, Pieminister is another great choice.
I tend to use afternoons to get down to bigger projects. I’m always trying to find the most efficient ways to communicate information to the sales teams which can include building a dashboard, or starting a new report from scratch using the tools and formulas available in Excel to pull in the necessary data into one place. Other days I may help find answers to questions that the sales teams have from how average discounts have changed or the impact of branch closures and openings on sales. I also use BookScan to keep an eye on market trends and as I’ve become the resident specialist on our data warehouse software I may show a colleague how to set up and schedule reports.
The day is over and I set off on my thirty minute walk back to Waterloo. I find walking in the evening a great way to unwind from the day with either music or a podcast. I’m currently listening to My Dad Wrote a Porno and getting some funny looks when I burst out laughing whilst walking down the street, it is totally worth it though!