I’ve been fortunate enough to attend the Cumbria Family Business Network events recently which has given me a great insight into other family businesses. I attended presentations by Jonathan Warburton of the Warburton family and Sarah Dunning of the Westmorland Family. They both were passionate about their business and were keen to stress that you need the right cultures and values for a business to be successful.
FMB is a family business, and I believe part of our success is due to having the right culture and family values in place. Family values are important because they provide a moral compass for the business, they act as a support through difficult times and they represent the bedrock to the culture of the business. I am not a member of the Beavis family but having worked for the company for nearly 25 years, I feel as though I am. I am passionate about the business and the success of the company, but I also want to ensure the environment we work in is a great place to work too. In order to do that you need to ensure that you have the right behaviours in place.
I looked at our business plan and reminded myself of what we had agreed were our core values:
- Honesty, trust and excellent service
- Financial security for our clients, our business and our employees
- Happiness for our clients and staff
But I think it goes further than that. There are a number of other behaviours that you need to demonstrate in order to achieve your core values. In order for us to provide an excellent service, we also need colleagues to take responsibility, provide a first-class service, be reliable, committed, motivated and consistent.
We need all of these values to be embedded to provide financial security for our clients, business and employees and I believe that that will provide happiness for our clients and staff!
We need to reassess the core values regularly and question whether they are still aligned as values may change, and they then may hold your business back.
Your culture is a combination of all the behaviours that exist within your business at any point in time, and I believe that the behaviours of everyone at FMB is a great representation of the culture of our business. I hope you agree!