For our third Lenten Reflection, we welcome James Timpson.
James is Chief Executive of Timpson, a family retail business based in Manchester, UK. The business trades from 1900 shops across country, comprising of 1200 Timpson outlets and the others a mix of Johnsons the Dry Cleaners, Max Spielmann and Snappy Snaps photo shops.
Timpson has been in business since 1865 and its success in the main is bestowed to their superstar colleagues and unique “upside down management” approach. Those colleagues who are customer facing and tasked with amazing customers on a daily basis are the most important; and for others who work behind the scenes, it’s their job to amaze the shop colleagues.
It’s often the strangest ideas that provide the greatest rewards and none more so than James’s maverick approach to recruitment. Working closely with the prison service, Timpson’s are able to identify potential candidates within prisons who have the right kind of personality to make it on release working within the business. It’s a closely managed process from selection, training and mentoring up to release, with the opportunity to secure employment with the Company from walking out the gates. 10% of Timpson colleagues were recruited directly from prison.
James Chaired the Employers Forum for Reducing Reoffending for a number of years, which is a group of likeminded employers who offer a second chance to people with a criminal conviction. EFFRR members actively encourage other employers to be more willing to recruit ex-offenders and are on hand to help guide businesses along the way to help maximize the success of any placements.
James says, ‘Encouragement, Kindness and Support are the 3 key ingredients to our Company success, particularly when recruiting a colleague from prison or someone who’s had a difficult start or time in life. Although many companies like to keep such ingredients top secret and under wrap, we’re more than happy to share our recipe for all to enjoy and benefit from.’
We are delighted that he has agreed to speak to us as part of our Lenten series.
Entrance is free and all are welcome to come along.