Meet the people behind the business: Ryan Marfleet, Owner and MD at Schmidt Kitchens Wimbledon
19th October 2012
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We recently had an interesting catch up with Ryan Marfleet, Owner and MD at Schmidt Kitchens Wimbledon. Ryan has an interesting background and a great desire to turn his fledgling enterprise into the roaring success that it deserves.
A little background about Ryan Marfleet...
Ryan is the Owner and MD at Schmidt Kitchens Wimbledon, and Ryan opened their all-new showroom on Kingston Road, Wimbledon in February 2012. Before launching Schmidt Kitchens Wimbledon Ryan was a fully qualified electrician running his own company for seven years down on the south coast, where he still lives with wife Marie and son Oscar... and where he commutes from every morning.
These are Ryan’s quick-fire answers to our quick-fire questions: 
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
That’s an easy answer... my seven month old son Oscar at 5am every morning. Which is a good thing really, as we live in Seaford – near Eastbourne – and is about an hour and a half’s drive away.  So I more or less jump out of bed to get to the Wimbledon showroom.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Before launching Schmidt Wimbledon I got great advice to go it alone for this bigger step forward. I realised that it would be a big step, and had the usual doubts and anxieties, but the people I listen to all said to just go for it. I also like this nugget: If you don’t know something, then educate yourself; if you can’t educate yourself, then employ someone to tell you.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Well, like most other lads at that age I definitely wanted to be a footballer. And I was heading on course to realise my dreams – I even played at County Football level until I was 15. But I got a serious knee, hamstring and ankle injury that put paid to that dream.
Who do you most look up to for business inspiration and guidance?
That will have to be my business advisor Gary, who I turn to before making any major decisions. It’s great to have impartial advice from outside the business, and Gary gives me a clear perspective on things.
What’s your top tip in managing people?
Managing people can be a challenging task for many business owners, and striking a balance is key. I find that by speak to your people and taking on board their views and opinions gets their involvement and ‘buy-in’ into the business. I find that they make a valued contribution.
If you could have dinner with any celebrity – living or dead – who would it be?
It’s got to be The King... Elvis Presley. I’m sure he’s got some great tales to tell and stories to narate!
Apart from your wedding day and birth of your son, what was the happiest moment of your life?
OK, so I’m going to cheat here a bit because it’s not exactly my wedding day, but associated to my wedding day. Our honeymoon in The Maldives was (outside the wedding and birth!) the happiest moment of my life – pure bliss!
What's your worst quality?
This is another quick and easy answer: undoubtedly that I’m a control freak... but hopefully in a good and constructive way though, in that I’ve got a real eye for detail. And when you’re in the kitchen business, that’s an important quality.
What’s the best Christmas present you’ve ever received?
When I was 12 I got a MBX bike, which I never expected to get, not one bit! I always wanted one, but I didn’t even ask for one. But – lo and behold – there it was on Christmas morning.
If you had your 15 minutes of fame, how would you use it?
I don’t have aspirations for global domination, so I would use my fame very locally and put pressure on the Government to reduce the level of VAT.

Thanks Ryan!
Visit the Schmidt Kitchens Wimbledon showroom on Kingston Road, Wimbledon – with free and ample parking.
About the Author

Andrew M

Member since: 10th July 2012

The Best of Wimbledon and Merton helps to bring all the best local information to all local residents and businesses throughout Wimbledon and Merton. We also bring trusted businesses and the community...

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