Business growth leads to personal growth for Scotloo’s office manager
When a company grows, it’s good news all round, right? More business means bigger revenues, and that in turn means more jobs. Well, sort of. The flip side of company growth is that, sometimes, employees are left scratching their heads and wondering just what happened.
Such was the case with Caroline Caird, office manager with Scotloo, a leading portable toilet and liquid waste management firm and part of Castlecroft Securities. Having joined the firm in 1998 as an office assistant, she has witnessed a rapid expansion in the last few years, as well as changes to her own job. Caroline rose through the ranks to become hire desk coordinator and, latterly, office manager.
And while she’s delighted to see her employer doing so well, adapting her role to rapid expansion has not always been easy, she says.
Added to that, Caroline had a self-confidence problem. While her boss, managing director Anne Smith, was more than confident that Caroline could do her job, Caroline wasn’t so sure herself! To her credit, though, Caroline knew the challenges she was facing.
“I knew what my weaknesses were. I knew I had to build confidence. There was a self-worth issue. I never realised how important a person I was for Anne.”
Enter Tickety Boo Training and the “spells” cast by our director Annie Lindsay. We say spell because that’s just how Caroline describes her one-on-one management coaching sessions with Annie – but in a very good way. Describing Annie’s process of getting Caroline to do some navel-gazing, and having her come up with her own solutions, Caroline says: “Annie is very very good at getting things out of you. She’s not going to give you the answers. It’s more that she asks ‘What would you have done differently?’ She puts you under a spell. She has you plant your feet on the ground, shut your eyes and say something with confidence. It’s like she puts you in a trance.”
Caroline also completed Tickety Boo’s ILM level 3 Award in Management, consisting of lectures and breakout sessions, before embarking on one to one management coaching with Annie. Caroline came out of both the management training and the subsequent management coaching with two things: a better idea of her own self-improvement in the workplace, and ideas for Scotloo. She was able to address her avoidance of conflict, and to accept praise when it’s offered.
As a manager of two employees, her work with Tickety Boo allowed her to see things from their point of view. “I was able to sit back and think, ‘If I was being told I couldn’t do that, how would I like to be told?’ Plus, I’d like to think I can deal with things a bit better and know what procedures to put in place. It opened my eyes.”
Caroline knew she was leaning too much on Anne. And Anne, who has also gone through management coaching with Tickety Boo, knew Caroline was capable of making a lot of decisions on her own. “Anne was like my security blanket. I would always run to Anne for answers and I needed to break away from that,” says Caroline.
Importantly for the business, her Tickety Boo training has given her the confidence to see what improvements can be made to Scotloo, and to bring some suggestions to Anne – something she says she would never have done in the past. Due to the rapid growth of the company, Caroline saw that team building in her own departments was necessary. She has also called for a clear statement on company strategy, and for an improved staff appraisal system. “With the company growth, how do the people at the bottom know what’s expected of them? And we need to pull everybody together more as a team, especially since this is a 7-day-a-week, event-driven business where workers are not always talking to others, or to managers.”
That said, as the office manager Caroline makes it known she is always at the other end of the phone. And the same goes for the woman who cast those spells on her – Annie at Tickety Boo is a phone call away too, offering ongoing support and guidance.