Smart Group 5

Elaine Sawford

Commercial Business Manager
“Having my parents attend the passing out parade in front of the Old College felt very special.”

Always on the up

Devoted Elaine has been with Smart since 2005. She has seen the company develop from 4 employees to now hitting 30! Elaine’s role has grown with the company, starting as a Christmas Sales Administrator before moving on to become a Client Account Manager. Continually bettering herself, a long stint as Business Development Manager has led to Elaine taking on more responsibility, also dealing in areas of revenue and budget management across the Group.

Christmas trees, baubles and stars

All of this self-improvement has led for an exciting career, working on events such as a Victorian themed Christmas party for 250 people in Claridges. With this event standing out from the crowd, Elaine describes arranging the party for a client who naturally wanted every little detail to be perfect. “Finding myself sourcing crackers that were worth £50, when a few months earlier I had been haggling over 50p souvenirs whilst travelling, felt rather bizarre - but great fun!” With the act Rick Astley calling her to see if she could organise his lunch in the hotel restaurant, Elaine isn’t a stranger to a star.  Reminiscing, she continues, “The get out was naturally tough, and I'm not sure Claridges quite knew what hit them.  The Christmas tree supplier picked up the giant Victorian tree, decorations and all, and threw it into the back of a van. At 1am, a landslide of baubles were rolling down the road and flying everywhere!”

Military made but don’t ask for a bit of the cake

Elaine’s proudest achievement is training at Sandhurst to be an officer for what was then the Territorial Army. She explains that it was physically and mentally one of the toughest experiences she has ever had. “Having my parents attend the passing out parade in front of the Old College felt very special.” In her spare time, Elaine likes to do outdoorsy things like camping and hiking – anywhere there is a bit of a hill, she is up it! She also likes her creature comforts, “I enjoy watching films with a big glass of red wine and an even bigger bar of chocolate, in front of the fire at home.” She enjoys cooking, but only when she is having guests around. She laughs, “I’ve had a few baking disasters however – including the time I made a cake with bread flour by mistake!”

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