Karen Bluff, Finance Director and Country Manager Polti UK, speaks about building the "Polti UK family", a united, competent team that works with the aim of satisfying the final customer.
What do you mean by “Polti UK Family”?
The Polti UK Family is primarily the core team of eight office-based people who each have their own roles and responsibilities and are also prepared to “roll up sleeves” and help out with other activities as the need arises. It also includes our key partners on whom we rely to support all our business processes that ultimately serve that most important part of the Polti family, our end-user customers.
Which are the most inspiring company values that I refer to often in leading my UK team?
The first value is respect: respect for each other and for everyone that we deal with – HQ, suppliers, customers, advisers.
The second value is teamwork: we’re all in this together so we support each other to find the best solution and to relieve the pressures that arise.
The third value is communication: to work together well the team needs to know what is happening and why; what is planned for the future.
The fourth value is commitment: the desire to get the job done to the best of our ability and to work together to find a solution to each challenge
Which are the main values that my team should have and respect in their everyday jobs?
The main values needed are those that I referred to above. If we all respect each other we can work well as a team, being prepared to question and challenge but also to listen to each other. And it’s vital that we communicate well so that everyone can understand our priorities and have the information to be able to meet our daily challenges.
What are the main challenges I’ve faced since I joined the company?
The first main challenge was the expansion of my role from being purely finance to include all aspects of the company’s operations in a short space of time. Good communication was vital at this time, making sure everyone knew what was happening and felt valued.
Then, following the departure of some key members of staff, we had to restructure roles and responsibilities within the team to cover all ongoing tasks and to prepare for the major challenge of moving out of our warehouse and workshop into smaller offices whilst outsourcing our returns and repair processes. Looking back, this was a really key period in which all members of the team played their part and when we all learned to work together, doing whatever was necessary to achieve our objectives.