Welcome John Barnes

Until a few years ago, I had never appreciated the value of brands, or the potential depth and variety involved in brand consultancy. I was always interested in organisations with powerful stories, strong values, and worthwhile missions, and so fresh out of my undergraduate philosophy degree I planned to travel and work at small purpose-led enterprises. Cue the inevitable pandemic disruption…

I only made it fifty miles. My first stop, at an organic farm and restaurant, turned out to be longer than anticipated. During my time there I was struck by the incredible effect that intangibles, such as storytelling and emotional connection, can have on consumers. I have always enjoyed exploring how cultural shifts, perceptions and deeper meanings attach people to brands, but this experience cemented my interest. As I became more aware of the rich value of these brand elements, I grew determined to find out what else I didn’t know, and so I decided to go to business school.

As my studies progressed, I realised my interests revolved around branding, innovation, and strategy. Whether researching the digital fitness revolution or the advancement of augmented reality in retail, I am happiest when applying critical and creative thinking to complex and current challenges. I find myself endlessly fascinated by disruptive technologies, cultural shifts, product offerings, and the propositions that unlock their value.

As a result, when I found the Value Engineers, it all seemed a bit too good to be true. However, following an engaging application process, and one month on the job, my high expectations have been exceeded. I’m working with incredible brands and as part of a phenomenally supportive, passionate, and curious team. It’s only the beginning, but I’m thrilled to be joining the Value Engineers at such an interesting time, and I look forward to contributing to the exciting work on the horizon.

By: John Barnes

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