Looking Back & Moving Forward: Neil Parrish
As the New Year approaches, I always take time to reflect on things. When you reflect, you think about everything that has happened to you on your journey and think about what comes next. Well, I think 38 years working at the same company deserves a small Blog, don’t you? …. and to people of my age, a Wilkinson sword razer quote comes to mind, “I loved the company so much I bought it!!”
At the age of 17 years, I found myself looking for work around the streets of Trowbridge, Wiltshire. I was constantly knocking on doors and hoping something would come along, one of those doors being IMP which was situated in a small back street called Court Street. A short stocky chap answered the door who said, “what can I do for you?”, and the rest was history.
Sometimes I think he spotted talent there and then, or he just saw an extra pair of hands, I’m not sure, but I started that week. Some of my very first memories consist of how cold the building was, how daunting it was to learn about a whole new trade, and how friendly the spiders were, well most of them.
Five years past and I knew what I wanted to be, a salesman. My father Tony Parrish who owned his own business on Bradley Road, also in Trowbridge, was a very successful salesman who travelled the world and had endless amounts of that ‘salesman charm’. When I was able to tune into my father’s outlook and drive in sales, my career really started. I started giving up holidays for driving lessons, taking a second job’s in a local chip shop that gave me free dinners, and I also packed meals in Walden’s, a local food factory. I think they are long gone now, hopefully, that wasn’t anything to do with me! I did all of this while playing semi-professional football for various towns around Wiltshire. It’s safe to say back then I was running on some next-level energy and ambition.
Eventually after receiving my licence, (don’t ask how many times I failed) my dream became a reality. I was off visiting customers and attending exhibitions trying to sell my wares. I was finally a salesman, company car, briefcase, and a tie, the full package.
Neil Parrish, IMP
Back then I never would have thought that fast forward to 2005, it would be time to stretch my wings and take on the company I had been with since the age of 17, (Ref Wilkinson sword razor comment). The MD then Andrew, who gave me the job all those years ago, was looking to retire, so I agreed, with the help of two other long-standing employees to do an MBO (Management buy out). It is crazy to look back at the past sixteen years and how far IMP has come, we have had highs and lows. A few years in, one of the three MBO partners left IMP and since then we have been through two recessions, Brexit, and a global pandemic (I think Andy knew what was coming). That being said we have always weathered the storm and come through the other side even stronger.
IMP Factory, 2021
2021 has had its own challenges, especially with the new variants, but with the continued determination and efforts from our office and factory teams to stay safe, they have allowed our production facility to continue in these very difficult times. IMP has constantly been looking at ways of improving costs through efficiency, creating better manufacturing processes, and crafting stronger relationships with our suppliers and customers. This has shown dividends through a more profitable 2021 and up to 25% sales already achieved for 2022, which is very exciting. This allows IMP to move forward into the new year towards a bright future where we can grow and invest. We are already investing in a new automated assembly machine which will be ready in early 2022, this machine will make IMP even more competitive, reduce costs to our customers and help towards a more secure future for all at IMP. We are looking forward to a very exciting 2022!
Thanks to all our customers and suppliers who continue to support us, we are eager to find out what 2022 has in store for us all. Have a very happy new year!
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