VINYL PROS MAGAZINE
This month our Managing Director Kerry Orme was asked by vinyl pros to feature in the 10th addition of their online magazine
PAUL TURNER SIGNWRITERS 2 GENERATIONS IN
After 41 years of trading and continuous evolution, Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd have mastered the fine art of moving with the times whilst also keeping its family values as a company.
Now Managing Director of the company that was started by her father over four decades ago, Kerry Orme talks to us about the history of the company, bringing more women into the industry and her plans for the future.
Although Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd is a family-run company in the second generation of its leadership, the family roots of signwriting go back even further than these 41 years. Kerry’s grandfather was also a signwriter, using the traditional stick-and-brush method. Paul worked for is father for ten years gaining the skills needed to start a new business.
Paul left his father’s company in 1982 and started Paul Turner Signwriter with his wife Margaret. After a short time, they invested in new technology by purchasing one of the first self adhesive cutting machines in the UK which was kept in the loft of their family home – the same machine that still resides at the new premises of the company today. The business has always been run as a tight-knit family unit, with both of Kerry’s parents working together as a team to cover all of the different aspects.
Referring to her parents as her role models, Kerry was keen to adopt a similar approach, ensuring that all of the bases could be covered when the time came for her to lead the company. As she progressed through the ranks, working her way up from the production bench all the way to Managing Director,
Her husband Waynne also joined the company. Bringing his creative flair to the business, Waynne quickly became proficient in the art of vehicle wrapping and now leads the installation side of the business.
Despite spending a lot of her own school holidays helping her parents at work and giving a helping hand, Kerry and Waynne have found themselves in the same situation with their own children today, as they regularly visit the unit to help their parents. The family values that Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd became so successful on still very much exist within the company today.
LEADERSHIP UNDER THE SECOND GENERATION
When asked about her future plans for the company, Kerry has a clear vision of where she sees the company under her direction, “while I am committed to the ongoing growth and success of the company, I do not aspire to become the largest company in our industry. My focus is on sustainable growth, maintaining the highest standards of quality, customer satisfaction and creating a positive impact in our industry and
community. Size alone does not define our success, rather it is the value we bring to our customers and employees”.
The business premises are both practical and controlled which gives the perfect conditions to serve their longstanding and new commercial customers. Everything is made and installed in perfect conditions and all staff are in-house the majority of the time. This eliminates any possibility of a job not meeting customer expectations of having a failed installation. The biggest challenge that Kerry has faced is the logistics of managing such customers. 80% of all the business through the doors at Paul Turner Signwriters is fleet work. As many vehicles come straight from the manufacturer, there can be wait times from body builders, or delays from a chain of people before anything is ready for branding. As a result, the work schedule is changed around every single day, without fail. In order to keep up with the changes and keep things running smoothly,
Kerry has employed someone else to manage the logistics operation. As an experienced events manager herself before having children, Kerry feels this was the role that gave her the transferrable skills that have made her successful today. With organisation being key in event management, it is no wonder that the incoming projects and turnaround at Paul Turner Signwriters run like a well-oiled machine.
As with any changes, Paul and Kerry were prepared for some kickback once he announced he was stepping back into the chairman’s role.
Reassuring their existing customers that the new Managing Director would continue to operate and provide the same high-quality level of service as they were used to was top of their priority list.
Knowing that she was following in the footsteps of her own dad and continuing the legacy that he created was bound to create a sense of anticipation, although Paul never had any doubts that his daughter was the right person to continue to lead the company. Some of the customers of Paul Turner Signwriters have been with the company since it first opened its doors 41 years ago, and some of these businesses have also been succeeded by the next generation. Knowing that as far as the service goes, it will remain the same, every single customer has returned to the company for their fleet livery during the transition.
Continuing to grow with their existing and new customer base, Kerry wants to continue the work her family have been doing over the past forty years. As this naturally comes with an evolution as technology and materials develop, the values remain the same and customer service and staff
wellbeing are paramount.
BRINGING WOMEN INTO THE INDUSTRY
One of the key things Kerry is keen to push for is the inclusion of more women into the industry. Seeing no reason as to why working in sign & graphics is more geared towards men, Kerry insists, “This is an industry that women can get into easily. It’s creative, there is a lot of design work to be done and wrapping requires a level of attention to detail that a lot of women would be great at.
Unfortunately, it’s never put forward as an option for people at college open days and I think that means it can be overlooked and is something people fall into accidentely.” Noting that not every aspect of the industry involves heavy lifting and that there are actually many different phases that a project goes through that anybody can get involved in is something Kerry is eager to spread the word on, especially when it comes to encouraging younger people into the industry.
With 3 out of the 8 employees at the company being female. Kerry is steadfast in her conviction. As the company grows and evolves, it is this diversity that continues to make a stronger and well balanced team.
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
As Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd steps confidently into its second generation of leadership, it’s evident that the legacy built over four decades is not just being preserved, but actively revitalized. Under Kerry’s stewardship, the company seamlessly marries the cherished traditions of the past with the innovations of the present, ensuring that the art of vehicle wrapping and signage solutions continues, to evolve while staying true to its roots.
The future looks exceptionally bright, with a clear vision and a commitment to both family values and industry excellence. As the company moves forward, it’s not just about maintaining a legacy, but about enhancing it, ensuring that the name ‘Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd’ remains synonymous with quality, craftsmanship, Service and a deep familial bond for generations to come.
Moreover, the transition from one generation to the next is more than just a change in leadership; it’s a testament to the enduring spirit of the company. The challenges and triumphs faced over the years have only strengthened the company’s resolve, with each experience serving as a stepping stone towards a brighter future. As Kerry navigates the complexities of the modern graphics industry, she does so with an unwavering commitment to uphold the values and standards set by her predecessors. With a blend of respect for the past and excitement for what lies ahead,
Paul Turner Signwriters Ltd is poised to not only continue its legacy but to redefine it, setting new benchmarks and inspiring future generations in the world of Vehicle wrapping and signage solutions.
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Look back next month and see what October brings?