Lee Heatherley was born and bred in Birmingham, where he lives to this day with his wife. 2019 marks his 25th year working for F. Ball, but how did he get to where he is today?
“My first job in the flooring industry was for a company called Dunnes Carpets, which I joined when I was about 21 years old. I spent 10 or 11 years with them before joining F. Ball, and I haven’t looked back.
“Flooring is a great trade full of down to earth people who are very easy to talk to. There’s always plenty going on, and F. Ball is a nice company to be a part of with a very strong brand name. My loyalty to them over the years has definitely been reciprocated.”
As technical representative for the West Midlands and North Wales, Lee gives regular advice to local F. Ball customers via phone calls and site visits. “I probably come in to contact with around 100 people every week, whether it be by phone, email, or visiting sites. It’s a lot of work, but like anything it gets easier with time and experience.”
With all that knowledge, we wonder whether there’s anything that Lee finds difficult about the job.
“With the rise in popularity of gypsum floors, I would say that calcium sulphate screeds are at least on par with moisture in terms of being an issue that customers regularly call me up about. The preparation process is not as straight forward as with other floors, so it’s easier for things to go wrong if the instructions aren’t followed correctly.”
Outside of work, Lee is a keen golfer and often takes part in the F. Ball golf days in addition to playing at his local club. “The F. Ball golf tournaments are great fun. It’s nice to spend time with colleagues and customers in a relaxed atmosphere outside of work.”
We wonder whether a career in sports was ever on the cards for Lee, or did he always know he wanted to work in the flooring industry.
“I actually had my heart set on being a chef for a long time. I can make a fantastic traditional Sunday dinner with a Jamie Oliver flair, although my children only ever wanted pizza when they were younger!
“Being a chef never materialised, and things have definitely worked out for the better. Not many people can say they enjoy going to work every day, but I can.”
We’re glad to hear it!