Melber Flinn turns 5
In 2020 Melber Flinn turned 5 years old! How time has flown. We actually have two birthdays, and the one I usually favour is actually in August when the company was incorporated, but the other birthday is the beginning of November, which is when my restrictions expired and Melber Flinn properly launched. Having missed the first birthday opportunity in August to write an anniversary blog, the November birthday has given me a convenient second chance to get it done, and with some persuasion from colleagues we decided to revisit a format that we have done previously – they pose questions on anything and I provide the answers. Hilarious for them, slightly dangerous for me, and hopefully the end result in blog form can provide a bit of light relief away from the doom and gloom of Covid. And they didn’t hold back with question suggestions, so we will actually divide the blog into a two parter. So without further ado…
What is the most important lesson you’ve learnt over the last 5 years?
Treat people with respect. Treat them how you would wish to be treated, do the right thing and good things happen. There is such a thing as professional karma.
What would you do differently if you could go back 5 years and start over again?
I actually don’t think I would do anything differently, which implies there are no regrets! I sometimes wonder whether I should have pushed harder for growth, whether we should be 10 or 12 people instead of 6, with an office or two, but I remind myself that would make us a different business. It would start to draw on skills which are not my strongest, such as man management, and frankly it would take me away from doing actual recruitment.
What are you most proud of over the last 5 years?
Professionally, coming 5th in the 2020 IIM survey. We recognise its value but we do no marketing or lobbying in advance. The IIM survey should function essentially as a mystery shopper exercise for the market, with candidates using the services of recruitment businesses and then reporting back on their experience by completing the survey. We aim to provide a good quality service all the time, without turning it up a notch when we know the survey has been released. For us to be recognised as the 5th best provider, when we don’t try to ramp up service standards, or canvass for votes, and when we operate in amongst some much larger corporate competitors, I think is a great achievement.
What has been your most embarrassing moment?
A little embarrassing, certainly very humbling, I once travelled 5 hours for three meetings, only for two of them to get cancelled when I was en route, and the other was curtailed to 30 minutes. I remember making calls on a park bench, trying to kill time before my train home.
Tequila or sambuca?
I hate spirits, I’d have to go sambuca because I think the alcoholic content is lower?
Pickled egg or luncheon meat?
Luncheon meat, the lesser of two evils.
With the first lockdown in March did you feel a tiny bit smug when business owners were banging on about the difficulties of managing remote working?
Yes, yes I did. Obviously I predicted a global pandemic back in 2015 when I set up Melber Flinn so thought a home working policy was the best way to go. I think a move towards remote working was the direction of travel pre Covid, particularly for service industry businesses, but Covid has accelerated that move away from place based working. We have always had the home working policy, so we didn’t feel the effects of lock down as much as other businesses, there was no disruptive transition to home working, or practical issues around sorting laptops and remote access.
Do you consider yourself to be a good boss?
Well no permanent employee has ever left Melber Flinn? They say people don’t leave bad jobs, they leave bad bosses, so I consider that a good indicator.
What is your favourite lunch?
A Cooplands. If you live in the North, you’ll know.
What was the last playlist you listened to?
Probably a Halloween megamix for toddlers.
If you won the lottery what would you do with the money?
I think I’d honestly give most of it away. I certainly don’t think I’d give up work, occasionally I fantasise about retiring early, but I don’t think it would suit me, I need to keep occupied, and I think boredom would set in quickly.
How many miles have you run since Melber Flinn was established?
Thanks to Strava I can give you the exact answer! 11,972 miles.
Do you regret promising we’d go to Ibiza for the 5th anniversary, upsetting the universe and therefore causing a global pandemic
Yes. I have to shoulder some blame here, I may well have tempted fate. Its me and the guy who ate the bat.
Have you put the money from the said Ibiza trip aside (along with all the money saved from not travelling to see clients, team lunches and coffees) so we can have a massive blowout in 2021 / 22?
Errmm, I’m going to say yes.
Part 2 to follow next Friday.