Jean is the Operations Director here at LINIAN, being with the company since its inception she set aside her successful career in the financial sector in 1984 to pursue the family business with husband Wes. Jean’s role as Operations Director has driven the successful development of the business, so we caught up with her to see what a typical day at LINIAN is really like...
Q: How did LINIAN start?
Jean: LINIAN started some years ago when Wes & I had an electrical wholesale business. We were known as problem solvers in the industry and were presented with such a problem by a Global Contractor. They needed something to fix fire cables faster and safer, Wes designed the product and we both worked together to patent and manufacture it, selling from our wholesaler. Lynne & Ian started LINIAN in 2015 and that is the business you see now. What started as a fire fix clip has expanded and we now provide support for over 100,000 types of cables also conduits and trunking.
Q: What’s it like working in a family business?
Jean: I have always worked with family apart from a few years in banking at the beginning of my career. To work with Wes, Lynne & Ian has been rewarding. We set the structure of the business at the beginning so that we could work together as a family for the family. I have only made one rule, no work chat at dinner, haven’t been overly successful with that but I persevere.
Q: Describe a typical day for you – is there such a thing?
Jean: A typical day for me is into the office at 8.00 am, breakfast while opening emails and start on my to-do list. This is usually abandoned around 10.30 when other priorities take over, best-laid plans and all that. We have a great Team at LINIAN, who are all very enthusiastic and excited about what we do here and the new projects we work on, so we usually have a team meeting and get set for the day. The phone is always busy and the best part of my day is to get to chat with customers and installers.
Q: What has been your biggest challenge since founding LINIAN?
Jean: We are very honest with each other and sometimes the challenge is not to take things personally. The great thing is we still enjoy working and socialising together and we laugh a lot.
Q: What has been your biggest professional success/achievement?
Jean: My biggest professional achievement is having is as an electrical wholesaler for 34 years and also making the transition to help LINIAN grow. It is hard work but enjoyable.
Q: What is your favourite thing about working for LINIAN?
Jean: The people, no doubt about it. Our team & extended team, our customers and our installers. I also love our ELEX and other exhibitions and getting together with old and new friends.
Q: What’s the best piece of work-related or personal advice you have received?
Jean: Try to always have a work-life balance, easier said than done. I remind myself every day, if we all have our health, anything that happens in business we can handle.
Q: What do you do to relax/unwind?
Jean: We have a caravan on the Argyll Coast which we go to often. I also enjoy quizzes and go regularly to the local pub with my friend. Three grandchildren keep me busy too.
Q: What’s next for LINIAN?
Jean: LINIAN is always working on new ideas, some of which come about from chatting with installers who tell us what problems they have. We have an exciting new product being launched soon which is out for testing feedback from our LINIAN Dragons panel, stay tuned!!