You know the name, now get to know the person. Toby Pache, managing director at Sharon Lee, discusses his love for playing the guitar, wanting to live in Provence and his ambitions to manage a heavy metal band

When did you start in the industry?
I started at Sharon Lee when I was 16 years old, transfer printing hats and unloading lorries during the school summer holidays. Then, when I learnt to drive, I drove the van backwards and forwards to London, delivering rush orders to various venues and printers. When I was 21 I joined the sales team and then in 2009, my father retired and I took over the running of the company. I am very proud of my company, especially the amazing people that work in it.

What’s your most over-used word or phrase?
When talking about risk: “It’s like jumping off a cliff and building a plane on the way down”. I cannot take credit for the phrase, but I hear myself saying it a lot. It must bug the hell out of people, but I like it. It’s a good motto.

What three words would your friends use to describe your personality?
I am not sure I can pigeonhole my personality. Friends are friends for very different reasons and true friends would probably need more than three words, some of which could not be printed, haha!

What is your favourite radio station?
Planet Rock.

Tomato ketchup or brown sauce?
Brown sauce without a shadow of a doubt, especially in a fried egg sandwich on Saturday morning.

What was the last book you read?
The Art of Captaincy by Mike Brearley. I am a big cricket fan and the way in which he relates sport captaincy with everyday life and business is simply inspiring. Anyone who wants to get themselves or others motivated should read this book.

What‘s your party trick?
Playing guitar – it is my most favourite thing in the world (apart from my kids of course). I’ve been playing for the best part of 25 years and I would say I am a pretty reasonable standard too.

What‘s your greatest ambition?
To own a house in Provence in the south of France with a classic British sports car parked in the drive, preferably an Aston Martin. There is something about that part of the world that I adore and I would love to live there one day. A few hats to sell yet though!

What’s your guilty pleasure?
There is no such thing as a guilty pleasure – if you like it and you’re not hurting anyone by doing it, why should you feel guilty about it?

Is there another job that you‘ve always wanted to do?
I am obsessed with the music industry – management of a rising heavy metal band would be a great job.

If you could be anywhere on Earth right now, where would you be?
Provence in the south of France, preferably with my family.

Which gadget or app couldn‘t you live without?
My Boss GT-100 Guitar Effects Processor. Every single tone and sound you could possibly want or need. It was a Christmas present from me to me and it‘s brilliant.

If you could ask one person (living or dead) one question, what would you ask?
I wouldn’t know where to start, to be brutally honest. I have hundreds of questions to ask hundreds of people and I am not sure I could give any of them priority. Sounds like a cop out, but I genuinely cannot pick one.

Toby’s Christmas present to himself: a Boss GT-100 Guitar Effects Processor

Playing the guitar is Toby‘s party trick and favourite pastime