- Job title:
- Chief Innovation Officer
- Fashion and Textiles
Stanley Russell is a Chief Innovation Officer and founder of his own company, C+ Advanced Performance Fabrics Limited, in Northern Ireland.
Having wanted a career in medicine, Stanley decided to study for a BSc in applied sciences. He soon became interested in research and development and following graduation, accepted a place on Primark's retail management scheme.
To succeed in this type of role, you need to be an extrovert person, who not only has the necessary textiles and scientific knowledge, but also business skills including problem-solving and time-management.
After over 10 years' experience working for Primark in marketing and sales, Stanley got a job in a weaving company. This role enabled him to use his sales skills but also concentrate on research and development.
"The company specialised in producing high performance textiles, particularly high-visibility fabrics. I was involved in identifying companies to work with and developing new products."
Stanley set up his own company, C+ Advanced Performance Fabrics Ltd, in 2005. He now works on a consultancy basis, developing, selling and marketing performance textiles.
"I also develop my own products and have so far created a range of performance products, including highly-visible, washable, breathable and waterproof clothing for the ambulance service and a fabric suitable for chemical, biological and radiation suits."
Stanley has to be highly flexible in his working day, often starting at 7am to enable him to check enquiries from the Far East. He may then work into the evening to focus on the US and Australia. He also often has to travel overseas.
"Over the past year I have visited China on five separate occasions, and it is becoming an increasingly important customer of mine. To stay competitive I need to ensure I develop good relationships with leading companies that may require my services in the future."
Stanley gives his tips for success.
"To succeed in this type of role, you need to be an extrovert person, who not only has the necessary textiles and scientific knowledge, but also business skills including problem-solving and time-management."