Hailed as Asia’s retail giant, the Primer Group of Companies, has come to establish a pretty solid reputation in the realm of business. At the heart of its success is the sheer amount of talent and commitment that each of its employees bring into their everyday experiences for the company.
One among the many bright-eyed individuals working to bring Primer Group’s vision into life is Renz Que, Brand Executive for The North Face PH.
Coming from a family that runs its own business, Renz had the opportunity to acquaint himself with the ropes of business at an early age. Bearing a natural passion for entrepreneurship, Renz would continue to foster his passion for business by constantly keeping an eye out for opportunities to hone his interest. So much so that when a path opened for Renz, by way of a suggestion from his sister – who was then one of the lead lawyers of Reyes Tacandong & Co. (a partner law firm of Primer) – to join the Primer Group of Companies as a brand person, Renz knew that it was worth a shot.
To date, Renz has been working for the Primer Group for a little over three years now and his journey so far, has been marked by no less than a limitless opportunity for personal growth and discovery. When asked about his most memorable experience in Primer, Renz shared that it was the transition from being the brand manager for a very small brand within the company to being the assigned as the brand manager for iconic outdoor brand, The North Face (TNF).
Renz recalls, “TNF came from a very volatile situation when I took over. Negotiations with principals weren’t going so well, our inventory was piling up, and brand equity was at an all-time low. But with the help of very, very good mentors and a solid team, we were able to turn it around and managed to push for a “play to win” year this fiscal year”.
Renz having fun with colleagues during their Christmas Party (left) and a colleague's birthday (right)
Despite being exposed to business at an early age, it was with Primer that Renz developed a profound understanding of what it takes to truly build a business and most importantly, how to stay relevant within an increasingly competitive landscape. As Renz claims, “Sustaining success can be more difficult than starting a business and making it grow.”
Though challenging, Renz found the experience extremely rewarding as he has grown confident in his ability to handle a significant business undertaking. Likewise, it is through these circumstances that he has learned the value of team work and the wisdom in acknowledging one’s limitations. As Renz enthuses, “Primer pushes you to exceed your potential and gain experience and knowledge you can take with you even outside the company.”
WORK SMART, PLAY HARD
Though it may seem as though Renz is all about the hard work, he takes pride in his ability to work smart in the sense that he always makes sure that he has time for himself as well as his friends and family. Renz largely owes this to the work culture espoused by the company. In particular, Primer values “Work that lets you play” as evidenced by the recent launch of its new office building, aptly named “Workplays”.
Renz supporting Bratpack’s campaign ‘Hit The Streets’
Imbibing the spirit of fun and exuding an air of creativity, care, and compassion, Primer’s new Workplays building serves to enable employees such as Renz to thrive in a space that nurtures innovation and camaraderie among colleagues. Most importantly, it also puts work-life balance at the forefront by housing various amenities such as an in-house gym as well as game rooms.
As a self-proclaimed fitness enthusiast, Renz appreciates the thoughtful facilities integrated by Primer within their office. In his words, “How can you experience your success if you can’t live long enough to enjoy it?” Moreover, he also delights in the connections he has made with his coworkers that extend well beyond the confines of the office. Renz shares, “Our small lunch group has developed into a group of friends, even if some of us are already working outside Primer.”
Renz with colleagues and friends during the 2020 Chinese New Y ear celebration held at the WorkPlays building
Truly, the distinct kind of relationship between the Primer Group and its employees proves to be the company’s foremost asset. In knowing to put a prime on the well being of its employees, the Primer Group is able to attract the dedication of remarkably talented individuals such as Renz. Likewise, it is the Primer Group’s commitment to ensure the welfare of its people that employees such as Renz are inspired to grow along with the company.
Looking back at all his experiences at Primer, Renz reflects, “Primer is like fine wine – you need to fully understand, experience, and learn her before you can fully appreciate what it is, and what it can offer. Once you understand her, it will be hard to let go”.
*story contribution based on mid-2019 interview