Trio of team members celebrate a decade at Smith Brothers

by Hannah van Rooyen

Hard work and loyalty don’t go unnoticed or unrewarded at Smith Brothers – especially when our colleagues hit the decade mark!

And the latest trio of valued team members to reach this momentous milestone are Craig Collinson, Ryan Smith and Kevin Clough, who have been awarded with watches as a token of recognition for their efforts over the years.

Operations/technical director Craig first joined the firm as a project manager when there were just eight operatives and four office-based staff members – including Richard and John Smith. Having previously worked at Schneider Electric for 28 years – where his relationship with the brothers began – Craig is now responsible for managing the day-to-day delivery of projects, once orders have been handed over by the commercial team.

Working closely with John and Richard, Craig helped to steer the company towards becoming an ICP. His highlights from his time at the firm so far have included winning a number of notable projects from Schneider and quoting for our first order over £1 million – a crucial stepping stone in helping to further expand our workforce and skillsets.

Commenting on his time at the company, Craig said: “A lot has changed since I first started – we now have our own building, better IT systems and improved procedures in all aspects of the business. All of this has been achieved through the investment John and Richard have put into the firm. But something that has stayed constant throughout my time here is that we all work as a team – from the co-owners to the operatives.

“Having this milestone honoured means a lot to me, as it shows that all the hard work I’ve put into the business has been appreciated. The gift will always remind me of ten good years. We’ve had some ups and downs along the way, but we have always come out at the other end smiling! I can honestly say that working at Smith Brothers alongside my colleagues has made the time spent here enjoyable, and long may it go on.”

Ryan first came on board as a cable jointer apprentice, working his way up from being on-site to in the office. Now as a project manager, he manages the jobs he would have previously worked on in years gone by. Since starting at the company, he has seen the number of employees growing hugely – with nearly nine times the number of office staff that there were initially.

With assignments gradually increasing in size, Ryan is currently responsible for overseeing a complex 66kV project. He has particularly appreciated the training afforded by the firm, and is grateful for the opportunity he has to work on bigger, more complex projects.

“To see the company successfully breaking into new markets and continuing to expand at such a rate makes me very proud,” said Ryan. “Hard work is really valued here, and it’s great to be recognised for it with this reward.

“During my time here, I’ve moved up the ladder in the typical way – without any special treatment for being a family member! – which I think demonstrates just how fair the company is to its employees. Recognition and professional fulfilment is available to anyone if the effort is put in.”

Commissioning manager Kevin spends most of his time out on site, overseeing the testing phase of projects. He first started working for the company in 2000, when it was just Richard and John, before taking a sabbatical. His role now is largely autonomous, and he enjoys still being involved in the technical side of the business.

Being awarded their first “big” contract in London was a key highlight for Kevin, and a benchmark in the Smith Brothers’ journey. The new premises and significant growth of the workforce have also been major milestones during his time at the firm, but he values the fact that they’re still a tightknit team.

Kevin commented: “Richard and John have always been forward-thinking and have done a great job of making the right changes at the right times over the years. They’ve invested a lot of time, money and effort back into the business over its lifespan and it’s brilliant to see this paying off for the whole company.

“Even as the numbers continue to rise, they still make an effort to listen everyone. I’ve had a good time at Smith Brothers over the years and have always been treated well – plus, most companies wouldn’t reward you for 20 years of service, never mind ten!”

Trio of team members celebrate a decade at Smith Brothers
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