Josh Mansell, Executive Director at Go2Games

PCR’s November Big Interview with Go2Games’ Josh Mansell

Josh Mansell, Executive Director at Go2Games tells Michelle Winny, editor of PCR about its long-term commitment to the gaming youth culture and how this goes beyond just games and peripherals, by putting the local community central to its business ethos.

Go2Games scooped this year’s Gaming Retailer of the year award under the Retailer category at the PCR Awards 2021. Known as a high quality retailer of computer games, consoles and accessories. G2G are committed to providing the latest and greatest titles, as well as a wide-ranging archive of fully refurbished releases.

G2G are focused on the gaming sector in a big way and pride themselves on offering unprecedented and personal customer service powered by its principles of highly competitive pricing, fast and effective service, and a genuine love for gaming on all platforms. The company’s relationships with distributors and publishers allow it to be a market-leading specialist in getting the right games to gamers at the best possible prices.

Go2Games goes beyond just offering the latest gaming stuff and works in close collaboration with Legacy Youth Zone and the DWP and others, young people are extremely engaged with its subject matter of video games as an operating business, which allows for various multimedia and ecommerce work experiences, internships, and apprenticeships. The company is also proving its ability consistently to create outcomes that allow for better chances of employment and employment opportunities within the borough. This will be boosted with its digital skills programmes. Michelle Winny, Editor or PCR spoke with Josh Mansell, Executive Director at Go2Games to find out more.

Please could you tell us a bit more about who you are collaborating with and why?
Since 2012, Go2Games.com has run as an online videogames retailer, with community at the heart of our actions and guiding our collaborations.

Our biggest collaborators are Onside Youth Legacy, Croydon College, London Learning consortium, and the charity Digilearning. We feel these collaborators share our goals and love for community.

Please could you explain a bit more about the work you are undertaking with young people and the benefits this brings?
As 2022 draws near, we have established big goals to make a difference in Croydon’s employability.

Levels Learning is a collaborative redevelopment project in partnership with the Croydon Clocktower and Central Library. The Digital Skills school will offer a range of courses at different lengths and levels of accreditation for all ages, centred around the engaging industry of video games. Additionally, a Levels Hub will offer work opportunities to put the courses learned into practice.

75% of jobs will require advanced digital skills by 2030, highlighting the importance of teaching and improving these necessary skills. This will help us change not just statistics but the lives of some of the 18,000+ people on Universal Credit, as of Sep 21 in Croydon.

If you are interested in supporting this cause, we have sponsorship options available, and we are easy to reach through email: josh@go2games.com.

Please could you tell us a bit more about the larger-scale project for the borough of culture 2023 you are working on?
Our involvement with the successful Croydon bid will be providing digital skills bootcamps with specific training, such as green screen editing.

How are you working with young people to find employment?
We are working with London Learning consortium to provide Kickstarter positions, traineeships, and work experience. We’ve worked with 9 apprentices from Croydon college, and we currently have 30 Kickstarters working with us. 7 of them have secured full-time employment. We also run CV/LinkedIn and Interview training workshops with staff.

Please could you explain a bit more about your involvement in digital learning and skills development?
Working with Digilearn, we created resources and courses that cover a broad range of digital skills. Levels Learning will offer a range of bespoke digital skills courses with videogames as the USP, ranging from 1 day to 4 weeks.

How does the company get involved with the local community?
As Gold Supporters of Onside Youth Zone Legacy in Selhurst, we have donated gaming consoles and run regular e-sports tournaments. Most recently, we brought 8 youth clubs together from different Croydon postcodes through the power of video games. We have provided console donations to youth clubs and raised money through a charity raffle for the St. Vincent Volcano Crisis.

Please could you explain a bit more about your involvement with Croydon College to put on a multi-faculty cultural event run by students based on gaming and popular culture?
Croydon College offers a range of courses. Each has different aspects that would provide a vital practical piece of a major scale cultural event, such as a borough-wide e-sports and pop culture event—run by young people for young people.

Please could you tell us a bit more about your partnership with the LSBU?
LSBU Croydon is a fantastic new arrival to the area. We were involved with the events providing the production, digital skills workshops, alongside the Futurescapes event. Moving forward, we will be part of the digital skills course being offered to students, specifically the module covering digitisation with SME’s.

I understand you were nominated for Multi-Awards at the Croydon Awards for your work within the borough and the UK during the pandemic, such as furnishing primary schools with data safe fully refurbished devices during lockdowns? Please could you explain a bit more about your involvement with this and why it’s important to the company?
During the pandemic, we ran a laptop appeal, #keepcroydonconnected, that gathered digital devices for the most vulnerable. This allowed students without laptops access to devices necessary for continuing learning remotely. Community is central to our business ethos, so ensuring students can continue learning and communicating was a no-brainer for us to get started!

Please tell us a bit more about your CV and Interview skill workshops and ongoing partnership with the Bigger Pie and how this is encouraging more female entrepreneurs into the tech space in careers such as blockchain?
Interviewing young people through the Kickstarter scheme demonstrated the range of CVs and interview skills held by applicants. Designing a CV, LinkedIn, and interview bootcamp was a quick win to improving chances of employability.

We work with a motto of ‘All can achieve’, providing female role models in crypto along with Bigger Pie. We understand the importance of representation and are focusing on supporting the talented and pioneering #womeninblockchain.

Please tell us a bit more about your agreement to launch larger-scale events with the Bigger Pie through the LSBU to accelerate young people into the tech industry?
Regular events, workshops, and courses will provide the guidance and knowledge required to get young people into the tech industry, with us running the course of digitisation of SME’s with LSBU.

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Further to the increased demand, we’re also seeing the dividends of our multi-year investments into advanced systems and business automation as we continue to record double digit growth despite the global product supply constraints.”

 

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