​IBA’s National Sales Operations Manager is writing her own job description

​IBA’s National Sales Operations Manager is writing her own job description

October 27, 2021

IBA’s Perth based National Sales Operations Manager, Dianne Rooke, took on the newly formed role in February 2021 and says she’s taken the title and truly made it a role of her own.

“Not many companies allow you to start with a blank piece of paper. And in the last eight months that piece of paper has been origami, it’s been drawn on and it’s been torn up a few times, but it is really empowering to be trusted to come up with how that paper will be shaped to develop business growth for us and our independent retailers,” Ms Rooke says.

Although she had been working in a national role for Coca Cola Amatil prior to joining IBA, Ms Rooke still believes that being able to take up the national opportunity from Perth is ground-breaking stuff and she applauds ALM for it.

“The lack of barriers in having a head office role in a region – it’s been incredible. Even more incredible is that this success has opened the opportunity for further appointments of national based roles for people across the country,” she says.

ALM’s Senior Talent Acquisition Partner, ALM & Corporate at Metcash, Heidi Maunder explains that for the business, it was never about the location.

“Early in the process, the decision was made to ‘cast the net further’ in terms of finding the right candidate for this critical role - regardless of where they were based,” says Ms Maunder.

John Barakat, General Manager, Retail & Wholesale Operations at Australian Liquor Marketers, says that Ms Rooke’s wealth of experience will "help IBA partner with key stakeholders to develop and execute operational excellence delivering the best store in town".

"What impressed me was her capability working with state teams, on how a national approach for process and planning would deliver a best in class service model. Di was able to articulate her process and detail on a sales plan plus think creatively about how focus packs can be shared with our stakeholders," he explains.

Prior to joining ALM, Ms Rooke had worked for Coca Cola Amatil for more than 20 years across several roles, most recently as National Customer Marketing Manager so a national mindset was not new territory for her.

“I have been fortunate to hold national roles based in Perth over the last nine years. The key to my success is in stakeholder relationships. A mantra I live by is ‘seek to understand before being understood’ and it is applicable regardless of title, role, or location.

"Through this I have been able to build trusted relationships with my stakeholders, which trumps any face-to-face conversation – and COVID has really cemented this,” she says.

Ms Rooke’s “powerhouse” team is also based in the regions with National Sales Planner, Kylie Bailey based in Queensland and National Sales Operations Coordinator, Lauren Arif in Perth.

“Being a new team, the three of us have also been able to work together to build what we want to be known for and being in the regions has enabled us to take a truly customer lens and listen to what is happening on the ground, to shape our strategy and support our team and independent retailers in their execution,” she says.

Together the trio have hit the ground running and moved quickly to implement a new robust framework to drive member performance and efficiency improvements.

“Both Kylie and Lauren bring a wealth of experience and support to our internal teams and retailers with a strong understanding of the independent landscape,” she says.

Ms Rooke’s extensive experience on the supplier side of the business means that she has arrived at IBA with a new take on things.

She says, “I have been able to “look under the hood” of multiple areas of the IBA business and coming from supplier land has enabled me to view things differently.”

Ms Rooke says that she relishes the scope and diversity of the role.

“From driving business efficiencies, defining and executing strategic initiatives, to the delivery of ‘best store in town’ offerings to our member network - every day I get the opportunity to make the lives of our independent retailers and people easier. No one day is the same, as I work with a magnitude of internal and external stakeholders. “

Indeed. Independent Brands Australia (IBA) is the second-largest network of liquor retail outlets in Australia with approximately 2,700 stores. The IBA network includes a stable of strong national brands, including Cellarbrations, The Bottle-O, IGA Liquor, Duncan's, Thirsty Camel, Big Bargain and Porters.

“The trust IBA has in me to work on such a breadth of projects and opportunities keeps me motivated. IBA has an inclusive culture, in the short time I have been with the organisation I have felt nothing but support and it really is a strategic advantage for us,” says Ms Rooke.


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