Fire protection company, Griffin Fire has been trading since 1979, and its current manager, Peter Latham, has been at the helm since 1990.
In 1992, as part of a London-wide awareness drive, Business for London contacted Griffin Fire to offer a business review.
Peter was delighted with the business support organisation’s direct approach: “We were all so busy running the company that I thought ‘Why not’? There are a lot of things I need help with, so I was happy to work with them.”
Environmental awareness grows
It was the beginning of a fruitful relationship, as Peter says that Business was instrumental in Griffin Fire achieving the important international Environmental standard BS EN ISO 14001, vital if the business is to develop and grow properly.
“As environmental awareness increases, and European legislation gets tougher, this standard will become increasingly important to our company as businesses across the country gear up to go ‘green’,” he points out.
Business develops through its staff
With the Environmental standard under its belt, Griffin Fire began discussing other ways that it could benefit from help.
“It’s great to have external input, as it gave us a clearer perspective of the future of the business,” explains Peter.
Griffin Fire’s business adviser suggested that as the company was growing, it would be sensible to clarify the business objectives, develop a clear organisational structure and involve the staff more in it’s future.
This fitted in with Griffin Fire’s business ethos and the management immediately began working to achieve Investors in People.
“I wanted to make staff aware that they all have an important part to play in the business’s development, to communicate better, and to motivate them individually,” he explained.
Some of Griffin’s staff were initially sceptical of how Investors in People could benefit them, asking ‘Why am I so important?’, but Peter was convinced that the business would not only benefit but also provide staff with a more fulfilling and enjoyable job.
“I want people to know that Griffin Fire is the best and that is most effectively achieved by not only our customers, stakeholders and suppliers believing in our service, but by our staff being ambassadors for the company. That will only happen if they are happy in their work and know that they have the company’s support.”
With the environmental and human resource standards achieved for Griffin Fire, still works regularly with the company, providing monthly environmental business support to keep the company up to date with relevant legislation and industry information.
“This is a big issue for us and we need to keep ahead of the game if we are to retain our environmental advantage,” adds Peter.
“Now we contact Business London when we want impartial advice and need broader experience – we have received advice on IT, finance, funding and personnel issues. It’s difficult to get this sort of expertise out of the Yellow Pages, especially when we need consultancy advice, and don’t want to attract expensive and predatory consultants. Business Link for London hasn’t let us down yet.”