BUILDING A COMMUNITY
Johnstons of Elgin Chairman Jenny Urquhart said combining our design, manufacturing and commercial expertise, from both Elgin and Hawick, together with the trainees sewing skills in Ayrshire, resulted in a deeper appreciation of all the skills to champion the 'Made in Scotland' sustainable ethos.
She said, ‘We wanted to share our passion for manufacturing in Scotland and show the artisans that their business proposition can be like ours where, from fibre to finished product, everything is made in Scotland.’ This was the subject of the workshop ‘Manufacturing World Class Textiles in Scotland’, led by our Finance Director Chris Gaffney, including an exclusive, in-depth virtual tour of our Elgin Mill. CEO Simon Cotton’s seminar discussed ‘Raising Your Business Profile and Building Your Brand’. These engaging discussions offered a 360-degree view of running a successful business in the luxury market. Learning and Development Manager Emma Hay took inspiration from our own leadership development programme in her session, ‘Building Professional Relationships’.
Emma explained, ‘The triple bottom line is about people, planet and profit. The artisans had learned in other sessions about responsible sourcing and how to be commercial in their designs and offering. This session focussed on people.’
Jenny added that the weekly virtual training sessions, unfolding during a time of pandemic-related restrictions, were a source of positivity for everyone involved and helped build a new community. Colleagues from across our business were only too happy to share business insights and tips, from Martin in London, to Nick in Hawick, to Laura, Andrew, George and Kieron in Elgin.
‘These sessions shared much more than business skills,’ she said. ‘It gave us a meaningful connection, which is so important. I think it helped everyone equally around the screen to have that focal point every Thursday morning to help get us through what was a difficult winter for everyone.’