Winter 2008 Inside... Welcome // Ask A Question // Laidlaw Quiz // Lightbulb Scheme // Laidlaw Conference // Our People // Focus On Saturn //
News A magazine for all Laidlaw employees
One Team Going For Growth The Laidlaw Commercial Conference 2008 has been and gone, but Laidlaw News brings you the information and photos from the event, which this year included representatives from our Dubai office and new acquisition Saturn Architectural Solutions. [See page 4 for more]
What are they looking at?
[To find out, turn to page 3]
2 Dear Colleagues, In this our Winter edition of Laidlaw News we feature some highlights of our recent fifth anniversary Commercial Conference. With the theme of “One Team Going for Growth” the Directors updated our sales and management team on the prior year company performance and growth objectives for 2009. The afternoon was spent participating in some team building activities and you can see how our teams literally joined together later. The Directors will deliver this same presentation to all staff as they embark on their traditional road show in December. In addition to our many people stories, we also focus on our new team at Saturn Architectural Solutions and give you an insight into their operations and people. I would like to thank the Saturn team for the way they have embraced the Laidlaw Group and already we have seen some great team work as we work together to leverage our supply chain and commercial opportunities. I hardly need to remind you all of the difficult economic conditions the country and indeed global economy are currently facing. The construction sector is being hit hard and few businesses will be immune from the downturn. It is thus critical that as a team we continue to improve our productivity and focus on the needs of our customers. Finally on behalf of the Directors I would like to pass on my best wishes to you and your families for Christmas and the New Year.
John Jefferies Managing Director
Ask A Question
“It‟s the one sport I still have the edge over them in!”
With Martin Anderson (Major Projects Manager for Scotland & North East)
All my money goes on... If my friends had to describe me in three my bikes and cycling. Oh! And of course my words, they would say I am... wife and two boys. competitive, determined, and reliable. (well that‟s what they said anyway). When I was a child I always wanted to be... You wouldn‟t know, but I‟m good at... a gamekeeper. cycling. With two grown up sons who are becoming as competitive as me, it‟s the one My favourite drink is... sport I still have the edge over them in! a nice cold pint of Guinness (I was first introduced to Guinness by JJ during a If I could have four people, alive or dead, cycling challenge in Ireland about 3 years over for a dinner party, I would invite... ago). Lance Armstrong (he is someone who has succeeded in the face of such high odds, at The soundtrack to my life is... the highest level, and is a great icon to me), Money for Nothing by Dire Straits and Road my Gran (she died when I was 20 years old, to Hell by Chris Rea – (Just like work really!). but was a huge influence on my life), Clint Eastwood and Marilyn Monroe (Clint The three items I would have with me if because I just love his films and Marilyn stranded on a desert island would be... because, well, need you ask?!). a fishing rod, a two way radio, and a knife. The shop I cannot walk past... Ever practical. is a good bike shop. That is why all of my My dream holiday would be... money goes to them, and why I have seven adventuring round Australia in a Land Rover bikes hanging in my garage and little room with my wife for several months. for anything else. The thing that annoys me most... My favourite gadget is... are inconsiderate drivers, and believe me my iPod, which I have just bought and there are plenty of them around. wonder how I ever managed without it. My favourite meal is... a succulent rib eye steak, chips and peas.
The phrase or word I use most often is... “not a problem”.
3 Laidlaw Achieves Laidlaw Quiz to win £25 in vouchers? Play the quiz and New Accreditations Want you could be in with a chance! Laidlaw has recently been awarded the international environmental management standard ISO14001 as a result of our commitment to minimise our impact on the environment, and also the coveted 'Investor in People' standard due to our increased focus on communication, training and development. Environmental Manager Adam Dorman commented “Laidlaw has set itself stringent standards to ensure that it continually reduces the environmental impact of its activities. These have become embedded into our working practices and procedures, and achievement of this accreditation is a formal recognition of the progress we are making. As the internationally accepted environmental management standard, ISO14001 provides a valuable benchmark for specifiers and clients as they assess supplier attitudes to environmental policy.” The Investor in People accreditation is designed to advance business performance by promoting best practice in human resource management through a framework based on three key principles of 'Plan, Do and Review'. The standard is subject to regular review to ensure that performance continues to improve in this regard. John Jefferies commented "I am delighted to receive independent acknowledgement that our company is working to such high standards. As an Investor in People, one of our main objectives is also to help our people perform to the best of their ability and achieve real personal fulfilment from working as part of the Laidlaw team."
GEOGRAPHY 1) In which city would you find St Fagans National History Museum? TECHNOLOGY 2) Plato succeeded which database system? SOLVE THIS RIDDLE 3) He manages accounts in a country not too far, and shares his initials with both a director and a manager who might say „bore da!‟ HAVE YOU BEEN PAYING ATTENTION? 4) What did Adam Dorman want to be when he was growing up? COMPANY KNOWLEDGE 5) Which environmental accreditation did Laidlaw recently receive? LANGUAGE 6) Can you solve this anagram? Greener Biros. PICTURE ROUND 7) Whose eyes are these? 8) Whose smile is this?
When you have the answers, e-mail email@example.com, titling the e-mail „Laidlaw Quiz‟. All the correct answers will be put into a hat and a winner will be drawn. Please get your answers in by January 23rd 2009! Last issue‟s winner was David Payne in Cardiff. Well done!
HR Update Starters Chris Lamb Vic Hawkins Andrew Scott Terrance Springthorpe Lee Hodgkinson Lewis Cornford Kerin Raine
Business Development KAM & Estimator Purchasing Manager Warehouse Operative Warehouse Operative Marketing Assistant Credit Controller
Manager Perth Willenhall Willenhall Willenhall Liverpool Willenhall
Administrator (TD) KAM Estimator (TD) Project Support Financial Accountant
Willenhall Gateshead Willenhall Bristol Willenhall
Lightbulb Scheme Overall Winner
Leavers Danielle Sang Dave Wright Jo Fellows Louise Harrison Lesley Maydew
1) September 2003 2) York 3) Blackberry 4) £3521 5) Sue Fellows 6) Mark Taylor 7) Alastair Walker
Laidlaw Quiz (Autumn Answers)
Lightbulb Scheme October Winner Gareth Evans (Warehouse Manager - Willenhall) Gareth came across a product, the Water Hippo, which reduces the amount of water used by toilets by 3 litres each flush. It could save on average £3 per person p.a. or £600 p.a. across the business.
Congratulations to Glynn Johnson, August‟s winner, whose idea has saved the most money for the company out of all 10 ideas selected. Glynn, a warehouse operative in Willenhall, suggested that instead of using different sized and formatted door bag labels, we instead use the smaller labels for all jobs. His suggestion was standardised across the company. At the Laidlaw Conference it was revealed that this initiative has saved the company £10,000. In recognition of his great money saving idea Glynn has won a trip for two to Prague! Keep your ideas coming in as the Lightbulb Scheme is still going strong, and we want to hear more of your money saving ideas.
Laidlaw‟s Fifth Birthday Special - Three pages of photographs from this year‟s conference!
Commercial Conference 2008 This year‟s conference took place on the 19th November at Carden Park in Cheshire. As you will see from the pictures in these pages it was both an informative and fun conference. For the first time attendees also included representatives from Laidlaw Gulf and Saturn Architectural Solutions.
This year we were celebrating the fifth birthday of Laidlaw Solutions Ltd and also a great financial result for the previous 12 months. Once again the team were joined by a number of new faces, including many from our new business, Saturn. John Jefferies gave the delegates a review of 2007/08 and highlighted the numerous successes we have had recently. Alastair Walker brought us down to earth with a reality check, pointing out that we are facing very difficult times in the wider economy and we need to be particularly mindful of cost and productivity throughout all parts of our business. Peter O‟Brien then concluded the formal session by outlining some of the strategic research work carried out for the business recently and illustrating a number of the growth initiatives that will allow us to continue to develop our business even in these uncertain times. Peter was assisted by a number of colleagues who spoke from the floor about some of these opportunities: Andrew Cooke on our Major Project activity, Chris Welford on progress in Dubai, Simon Walden on Saturn and its customer focused approach to business, Nigel Bligh on the many new product development initiatives from our doors team and Roy Bradburn on the significant opportunities for our handrailing business. In the afternoon there was a team building exercise which involved a lot of swinging from ropes but proved a lot more fun and a lot less intimidating than many had feared. The highlight of the evening event was a performance from our in-house band „Loutish Lover‟ who did an outstanding job in entertaining a notoriously 5 discerning audience!
The series of pictures at the top of this page includes one of Chris Welford, General Manager of Laidlaw Gulf. 1) Group Managing Director John Jefferies. 2) Simon Walden, Director Architectural Solutions.
3) Alastair Walker, Finance Director.
4) Commercial Director Peter O‟Brien. 5) Dave Boland, Lawrence Crane and Mike O‟Brien enjoy a drink prior to the start of the conference. 6) Nigel Bligh giving the attendees the low-down on doorsets. 7) Roy Bradburn discussing growth opportunities in handrails and balustrades. 8) Sat around table 4 are Steve Jukes, John Jones, Ian Walker, Dave Regan, Tony Kears and Vic Hawkins. 9) Dave Hill, Jim Brice and Lee Walker.
10) Melissa Walker, Adam Dorman, Joe Cairney and Anne-Marie McSherry.
Team Building I was asked to be one of six team leaders for the team building events which included archery, clay shooting, a rope assault course and using the zip line. I have to say that I excelled in all of them, ask anybody! However (and I‟m not looking for sympathy) I did fall off the ropes and really hurt myself (for the team, of course!). The team activity worked well as it gave us chance to network and put faces to names. In my case I used it as a time to crack my whip and ask for more enquiries! Now reps, don‟t be scared but, because I know who you all are now there is no hiding from me next time I see you if you don‟t keep sending me your enquiries! Last but not least I need to mention Clint Robertson and Steve Griffiths‟ excellent dance moves on the tight rope! Hopefully we‟ll be seeing them on the next instalment of Strictly Come Dancing. Gemma Dickens (Sales Co-ordinator - HR&B)
See if you can name all of the employees shown in the group photo at the top of the page. If you think can name the daredevil on the front page then let us know! 1) Lenny Christie, Karen Armstrong, Simon Marr, Dave Boland, Dave Goodwin, Andrew Cooke, Will Davies and John Jones walk the line together. 2) Nigel Bligh and Steve Jukes hold on for dear life! 3) Suzanne Eastwood gets adventurous.
4) John Jefferies followed by his team.
5) Lenny Christie and Keith Evans lead the way for their team. 6) Clive Edgley whizzing down the zip line. 7) The teams are still going as the sun starts to set. 8) Hamish Gordon, Lee Walker, Clive Edgley and Alison Towle try their hand at clay pigeon shooting. 9) Bernie Rogers takes aim.
10) Ian Walker taking a well deserved rest with a cup of tea and just a few biscuits!
6 Evening Event It was 7pm and I had just left my room at the Carden Park Hotel. Half way down the stairs I heard a noise which sounded like a herd of elephants crashing through the reception area. When I got to the bottom of the stairs I was met by a stampede of suited men all running in the same direction. Yes, the free bar was open. Let the Laidlaw conference begin! After a lovely three course meal we were treated to a medal presentation for the team building, which was presented by an obviously colour blind employee as he blatantly couldn‟t see the blue team (yes, we were robbed!). We were then entertained by our after dinner speaker, Martin Gold. The night was finished off with the talented sounds of „Loutish Lover‟ who were so energetic that I‟m sure Jeff from Cardiff put his knee out just sitting at the table.
By the end of the evening everyone was happy... except perhaps two people; John who had to sign the cheque, and Shafiq who realized he had to organize it all again next year. Brian Nesbitt (Branch Manager - Glasgow)
1) Back row Peter O‟Brien, Will Davies, Dave Goodwin, Tommy Boyce, Dave Boland, Mike McCann and front row Simon Marr, Sharon Skitt, Adrian Smethurst, Karen Armstrong, John Jones and Andrew Cooke - the winning team from the team building exercise. 2) Back row Gemma Dickens, Karen Armstrong, Rachel Tipton and front row Suzanne Eastwood, Melissa Walker and Alison Towle - the team leaders. 3) The band for the evening, Loutish Lover: David Hough (Laidlaw), Steve Morris, Martin Windsor, Paul Jones (Laidlaw) and out of shot Jonathon Hough (Laidlaw). 4) Loutish Lover members Martin Windsor, Jonathon Hough (Laidlaw) and Paul Jones (Laidlaw). 5) Martin Anderson and Steve Griffiths. 6) Brian Nesbitt and Anne-Marie McSherry. 7) After dinner speaker Martin Gold. 8) John Jefferies and Clive Edgley with ex-Laidlaw Managing Director and Godfather of our industry, David Whitworth.
The day after the conference the serious golfers of the company, and some from our suppliers, gathered for a friendly (yet competitive) tournament as has now become tradition.
3 1) John Jefferies, David Stacey (Dorma UK) and Phil Street (IR) 2) The golfers gather on the tee. 3) Andrew Cooke in a little trouble! 4) Clint Robertson is the nearest pin. 5) Phil Street teeing off.
Adrian Smethurst (IT Controller) To the left is a selection of photography by our own Adrian Smethurst. The top two were taken at this year‟s conference, on the golfing day. The other four wildlife shots were taken in a wildlife park in Tenerife. As you can see there are some beautiful photos. We thought we would include them in this issue not only to show off Adrian's camera skills but also to say a big thank you for all the photography he does for Laidlaw News and throughout the rest of the business. He is, and has been for some time, Laidlaw‟s official event photographer!
If you have any stories to share, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have any photographs you are particularly proud of, and think are worth displaying for the company to see, please send them in to us here at Laidlaw News and we will be happy to display some of the best ones.
(Warehouse Operative - Liverpool)
Vicky Cardus was asked by her colleagues at our Liverpool branch to send in this photo of George who works in the warehouse. They think, and so might you, that he bears an uncanny likeness to the famous television presenter (and formerly the comedian known for his wickedly funny character Lily Savage) Paul O‟Grady! Do you have a colleague who you think looks similar to a celebrity? If so, send us in a picture and tell us who you think they look like. We will feature any look-a-likes submitted in the Spring 2009 issue of Laidlaw News.
Congratulations to Shafiq Sharif who has recently received a Birmingham Governor Recognition Award from Chrissie Garrett, Assistant Director from the Directorate of Children, Young People and Families within Birmingham City Council (pictured). The award was for “dedication towards Anderton Park Primary School and the exceptional Leadership shown as Chairman of its‟ Governing Body”. Such awards are made by the Birmingham Governors Network to acknowledge outstanding contribution towards school governance in the City.
Can‟t find your previous copies of Laidlaw News? Want to show off your picture or article to family and friends? Whatever you may need older editions of Laidlaw News for, you can now find them on our new website at www.laidlaw.net/about-us/newsletters.aspx or on SharePoint.
Shafiq has been a voluntary Parent Governor at this, his own primary school from years gone by, for the last seven years, five of which has been as Chair of the Governing Body. This has entailed leading a team of 15 members from Teacher Governors, Parent Governors, Community Governors and Local Education Authority Governors from a strategic perspective, with a collective legal responsibility for a £2M budget for the school which has circa 700 pupils.
The Laidlaw News SharePoint site not only features downloadable copies of the newsletter, it also has a calendar to show upcoming events, an image gallery with pictures from Laidlaw News‟ past and a discussion board. Just head over to OWL and click the „Laidlaw News‟ tab!
Commenting on the award Shafiq said “being a Governor is a very serious role and carries legal responsibility; it‟s great to be recognised for all the long evening meetings and extracurricular effort that has been put in. It‟s a collective team effort and in my opinion you can never do enough for children. It‟s a pity however, that we do not get paid for it.”
Focus On Saturn
1 Pictures of Simon and Suzanne can be found in the Conference pages. 1) The exterior of the Saturn office.
2) Nicki Moore at her computer. 3) Nick Peacock having a laugh with his colleagues. 4) Ian White looking very busy on the phone. 5) Ellie Martin among a pile of paperwork. 6) Damien Scantlebury sorting out an order in the warehouse. 7) Ted, the Saturn mascot. 8) John Darby and Keith Clare-Brown.
Meet The Team
Simon Walden - Director Previously the owner of Saturn, Simon remains in overall control of Saturn Northern and Saturn London. He enjoys clay pigeon shooting and motorbikes.
Suzanne Eastwood - Director Outside of work Suzanne has many varied interests including skiing (snow and water) tennis and being out on her Triumph Bonneville.
John Darby - Technical Director Born in Wolverhampton, John now lives in exile in North Yorkshire.
Nick Sanderson - Saturn Solutions, London Compulsive, obsessive West Ham supporter... but a nice guy underneath!
Keith Clare-Brown - Access Control & Automatic Specialist Enthusiastic outward bound achiever.
Derek Belton - Estimator Yorkshire Iron man!
Ian White - Contracts Manager Fair-weather golfer and (suffering) Leeds fan.
Nick Peacock - Contracts & Warehouse Manager Outside of work Nick is a keen Mini enthusiast.
Ellie Martin - Contracts Manager & Sales Support Recently married Ellie is looking forward to her three week honeymoon in America.
Nicki Moore - Receptionist & Accounts The company Rottweiler!
Damien Scantlebury - Warehouse Operative Soon to become a new father!
The Company Ethos Suzanne and the team at Saturn have built a company founded on the principle of service. With service in the forefront of all the members of the teams‟ minds, Saturn have successfully secured a number of strategic supply agreements that have ensured and will continue to ensure Saturn‟s long term growth and profitability. Saturn have maintained a level of flexibility that has resulted in a company capable of thriving regardless of market conditions. They are presently looking to introduce a „Zero Defects‟ initiative that will further raise the service bar even higher and set the highest of industry standards.
6 As part of continual efforts to reduce our carbon footprint, this brochure was printed on FSC approved paper stock which originates from well-managed forests, controlled sources and recycled wood or fibre as indicated by the logos to the left.