Do you remember when…
Graham Ticehurst does!
When he joined Elliotts on 30th July 1979, just 2 days after his 16th birthday, it was only meant to be a temporary job before joining the RAF. But over 40 years on, Graham is still here and going strong.
“I started in the back office helping out on the phones, making tea etc.
The job was actually only to be a stepping-stone before I was to join the RAF in January the following year. January came and up to RAF Swinderby I went. Within two weeks I knew I wanted to come back to Elliotts, and luckily got my old job back!
I'd enjoyed my first six months at Elliotts and felt this was better suited to me than the Forces.”
Today, we have a fleet of 54 vehicles, and counting! Not when Graham first joined us…
“I remember on one occasion being tasked with collecting a cheque from accounts to pay for a new crane lorry. It was only the second one to the fleet and cost £28k.
George Payne who also worked in the back office, had been with the company for over 40 years and remembered when we delivered by horse and cart!”
Graham then went on to work on the trade counter before becoming a Supervisor, then working his way into Directs before finally taking his current role of Sales Rep – a role he has now held for 32 years.
“Being a sales rep can be a tricky role, which I found out pretty quickly! There was a lot of time spent driving between sites and customers offices, often their homes, just trying to build that all important relationship.
I think I’ve managed to achieve this as I’m still dealing with some of the same customers today."
But the way Graham does his job today has changed greatly since he took on the role 32 years ago.
“The role has changed massively over the last 10 years in particular, mobile phones being one of the main reasons.
We used to get £10.00 per month expenses for phone calls made in public phone boxes, plus our home phone bill was subsidised for calls made in the evening."
"But now we get multiple phone calls, e-mails & texts through-out the day. I even get the occasional WhatsApp and most people expect an answer within the hour or so.
Although the improvements in communication is a good thing, it can sometimes be difficult to manage.”
40 years at Elliotts has seen Graham work under 3 generations of Elliotts, the growth of our branch network from 2 to 13 locations and turnover grow almost 1500% from £5 million.
“During my time with Elliotts, I have met and gotten to know so many great people.
I've been lucky enough to sail across the English Channel a few times with Newlyn Mason Elliott (4th generation Managing Director) who would do an annual trip and ask if any staff would like to crew for him. On the last trip, we saw the Mary Rose being lifted from the Solent in its yellow cradle.
In 1992 I did my first charity bike ride with Challenge Adventure Charities and remained in the saddle for the 12 years that followed.”
40 years is an incredible length of time to remain at the same company. So, what is it about Elliotts that means Graham is one of our longest serving employee?
“I suppose I felt, and continue to feel, comfortable with the role I play and the people I work with, colleagues and customer alike.
There has been no reason to leave.”
Congratulations to Graham on 40 fantastic years of service!