Day in the Life of a Shopping Centre Manager – Simon Martin

Simon Martin is currently the Centre Manger at Midsummer Place, a Shopping Centre in Milton Keynes.


Morning Routine:

I am up at 5 am every day, I read a few pages of a positive thinking book whilst having a coffee, every day I show my gratitude for the things I am grateful in my life, my family, partner, health, wellbeing etc.

I then head to the gym and workout which sets me up so well for the day, a clear mind and a healthy body is such a great start to tackle my day ahead.

En-route to work I will always call one of my network to say hi when I get to work I touch base with the team and at 9.30 am.

I chair a daily huddle with my senior leadership team where we discuss the day and remainder of the week ahead (I am a big believer in working together with my internal team and sharing information and best practice in order to deliver the best level of service to all of my internal/external customers).


Workday Highlights:

I work through a number of ongoing projects throughout the week which includes producing reports for the surveyor and client, introducing new tenants to the scheme, working with the MK BID and working with the local police etc.

The exciting thing about my role is the variation of running a shopping centre; from working with our retail partners, driving footfall through eventing, releasing press statements to networking with the local business and charity communities in Milton Keynes.

Dealing with the day to day running of the shopping centre is varied and can involve things from dealing with a lost person through to conducting a senior director visit of the shopping centre.

As you can see there is so much that happens it’s really varied and every day is so different.


Lunchtime Escape:

I tend to work through my lunch break but love to drop into one of our food operators from time to time during the week to have a coffee or sandwich (my favourite is Pret)!

It gives me a real time view of what our customers see, taste, smell, and experience and there is nothing better than having a full understanding of what our customers experience.

I also like to have a walk around the shopping centre to say hi to my security and cleaning teams who all work so hard and time spent with the centre manager is really important to keep in touch let them know how valued they are and listen to their needs and thoughts.


Post–Work Delights:

I am super busy outside of work. I love walking in the evenings with my daughter, cooking for my family on weekends etc.

You will find me in the gym on Saturday mornings and when the weather gets milder, I will be in my garden every weekend tending to my many plants from across the world! I am also a big car fanatic and will spend time every weekend cleaning my car inside and out to a high standard.

I love R & B music and will be wired into Spotify whilst I am in the gym, cleaning the car etc. I also subscribe to Audible, and I am listening to a great book right now by Simon Sinek (Leaders Eat Last)…!


Closing Thoughts:

I feel the key to being a good centre manager is understanding what the customer wants; listening to both the centre visitors and retail partners and building relationships. This is critical as there are so many stakeholders and key partners who all add so much value to the shopping centre and visitor experience.

Working closely with the centre team is paramount as there is so much experience knowledge and expertise within the team, every person and role is key to the centres success.

As an ex-retailer joining this industry, my advice to anyone who is following a similar journey would be to gain a quick understanding of who the key stakeholders are for the scheme. Find people in your organisation who have come from a similar background and can share their learnings with you, book in plenty of time with the internal centre team to gain a good understanding of how the scheme is run and get some quality time with the surveyors and asset managers who have a wealth of knowledge that can really support a centre managers understanding of the scheme.

Overall, six months into my role, I am so happy I joined Savills and can see myself in this industry for a very long time!


If you’re looking for new opportunities with Placemaking, or if you’re looking to boost your network within the sector, please reach out and I’d be happy to have a discussion!

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