Behind the scenes

FIS Worldpay takes on our Big Challenge Day

Our Big Challenge Days are a great CSR opportunity for corporate teams to learn while they help Big Issue vendors earn

After two years on stand-by due to the pandemic, we were finally back on the streets with our Big Challenge Day on the 6th of April.

For our return event, we took out a team from payment solution provider FIS Worldpay. The team was led by FIS Worldpay Payments Optimizer, Matt Everitt.

Spending a day working alongside Big Issue vendors is an incredibly insightful experience. You will discover what it is like to sell the magazine and see first hand some of the challenges that Big Issue vendors face on a daily basis – learning about their resilience and sales strategies.

Our Big Challenge Day is a great initiative for motivational team building whilst honing customer engagement and creative sales techniques; sitting well within the learning and development space. It also meets social and financial inclusion objectives as vendors appreciate the camaraderie as well as the extra sales made during the day.

Big Issue vendors are tenacious; setting up their micro-enterprises in the midst of real adversity. So as well as raising awareness of the issues surrounding homelessness and poverty, the experience is equally inspiring and humbling.

This Big Challenge Day was even more special as it was the first organised in conjunction with Sales Training specialist Mercuri International Group.

As Big Issue vendor Paul Logan (pictured bottom right) says, it was a huge success.

We are bridging the divide between corporate boardrooms and the streets trodden daily by Big Issue vendors. This helps more people be aware of what being a Big Issue seller represents: People working hard to rebuild a broken life, for whatever reason they got where they are, rather than just sitting on the pavement waiting for a handout”.

And FIS Worldpay colleagues agree with Paul.

I learned so much about myself today, about human nature and resilience! Next time you see a vendor of The Big Issue please acknowledge them, your purchase will make such a difference to their day! 

Pamela Hughes, Project Manager (second from the right)

It felt amazing to step in a vendor’s shoes for the day. I was selling Big Issue magazines on behalf of Big Issue vendor Stan. How cool is that?  Everyone deserves a home, and it is unfortunate that many of these sellers are invisible to us as we rush pass them. They have amazing stories to tell, and they are incredibly resilient and entrepreneurial.

Frederico Queiroz, Strategic Sales Director EMEA and top seller of the day (pictured right)

Having just joined The Big Issue family, it was my first Challenge Day, too. And it was thrilling. Everyone, volunteers, and vendors alike, were a bit nervous at the start, as was I. It’s a new experience for our vendors to be responsible for a sales team of four. And our volunteers experienced quite the learning journey throughout the day too. Not only are they finding out how people fight homelessness, but they are discovering new things about themselves and their team, which makes for a powerful learning experience.

By spending a day as a vendor, volunteers are also able to sharpen their communication and sales skills. I witnessed Girish Chandegra, Strategic Sales Director at FIS Worldpay, test and refine his sales pitch the spot until he was confident he was getting the highest level of attention and sales from rushing passers-by.

I think Matt from FIS put it best – what a day to learn while you earn.

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

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