November 1, 2018
Driving cultural change through a business cannot take place overnight and Nigel Freeman understands the need to take time to communicate with every employee.
Manufacturing director for the 130-strong TT Electronics site, in Hartlepool, he currently has a fascinating challenge.
The company had traded as Stadium Group since 1989 before being acquired in April this year by TT Electronics, a global provider of engineered electronics for performance critical applications with more than 4800 employees operating from 27 locations worldwide.
The acquisition means absorbing a new culture.
TT Electronics already has an existing electronics manufacturing site in the North East, based in Bedlington; this presence in the region is now strengthened further with the addition of the Hartlepool plant and across both facilities the head count stands currently at 430 staff.
Nigel reflects: “Our core values are how we act when we are at our best. It is all about doing the right thing. In terms of our internal culture, we must aim to bring out the best in each other; to listen, respect diverse views and to treat people fairly. We need to actively support each other to work safely, develop expertise and be successful. We need to cheer on each other’s success.
“When all colleagues are engaged and understand where a business is headed, how it plans to get there and the vital role that they play in making it happen, you then have every chance to be successful.”
Where Nigel is concerned, developing a strong company culture is not confined to staff. He is highly aware that to be seen as a great place to work and to attract high-quality staff, the company must reach out into the community.
“We are aware that the success we have achieved to date at Hartlepool is down to the loyalty and dedication of the people we employ, the majority of whom live within the locality,” he says.
“It is important we put back into the local communities that have supported us so well over three decades.
“One of the objectives we are currently reassessing is how best to reach out to schools, local community groups and worthy causes to assess how we can help and support them and, indeed, how we can learn and benefit from them.
“At the same time, we want to have a stronger voice within the business community and we are looking at forums and bodies such as the Tees Valley Partnership and the Economic Regeneration Team at Hartlepool Council that can assist us to do just that.
“Developing the next generation of the workforce is a challenge for most companies.
TT Electronics is a keen supporter of the local communities in which it operates and encourages young people to pursue STEM subjects.
“At Hartlepool, we are in discussions with Gateshead and Hartlepool Colleges to assess
how they can help us engage with and provide dedicated training courses and apprenticeships for young people looking for a career in the exciting world of electronics.”