Chairman at Jennings at Garsington Ltd
I was brought up in Garsington. My father and his brother ran a poultry farm. Enterprise was in the blood. My father instigated the conversion of sheds into business workshops, and so began the Jennings Property business, back in 1980.
Having trained as an accountant my father asked me to join him as the business had by then grown to 35 tenants, and he needed help. Soon after my father died (1995) and I took on the responsibility on behalf of my family.
It was clear to me that my father treated the tenants with great respect, and so have I. You need to run a business to have true empathy with owner managers. Empathy became an important part of the ethos, and when I met my coach, Carlos, he encouraged me to communicate it to the team and everybody!
In an environment which is capital heavy, and populated by masculine energy based around return on investments, we have managed to turn the process on its head and give away our power and control for the sake of building trusting relationships. To my knowledge no one else in the commercial property field does this. It is in our blood.
The company now employs 12 people, and has 130 tenants. We are virtually 100% fully let. We don’t use solicitors or agents, preferring to handle it all ourselves.
My dream is that every single member of the team feels confident enough to show prospective tenants round, and do a deal with them.
Mike will be talking to us about how he has built a successful business through building trusting relationships, and how this approach has been the key to their sustained success.