Peter Joy, celebrating 20 brilliant years today.
Today marks the official 20th birthday of Peter Joy Estate Agents, the day that Peter Joy opened the doors of his business in Stroud for the very first time. Much has changed in 20 years, but a huge amount has remained constant; most significantly that Philippa Kenzie remains at the helm after 17 dedicated years and Peter Joy Estate Agents remain truly independent and market leaders across the Stroud Valleys.
Later in June we intend to celebrate in style with a party for staff and customers; today however it seemed fitting to mark our formal birthday by speaking to Peter Joy’s longest standing member of staff, Clare Bedwell who has been with Peter Joy since that significant day 20 years ago.
So as Peter Joy’s longest serving employee how do you remember that big day 20 years ago when you opened for business for the first time?
“I remember being excited and very nervous, we were opening a new business with no instructions, nothing to sell! However, our first instruction came in on day 1 and we haven’t looked back since.
As many readers will know Peter sadly passed away in January 2000 less than 3 years after opening, what is you fondest memory of Peter?
“Peter was a wonderful man and a force of nature, my fondest memory is his sense of humour, his very loud laugh and the way he effortlessly built rapport and put people at ease.”
A lot will have changed in 20 years, I can see your branding has for example – but what has remained constant?
“Philippa became Peter’s business partner in1999 with the opening of the Nailsworth branch, she has been our one constant – our North Star I suppose, particularly when we lost Peter so unexpectedly. She really held everything together. Our other constant has been our genuine dedication to our customers and providing the very best standard of service, Peter was passionate about it and Philippa is too. It’s what I think really sets us apart from the competition.”
Estate agency has changed hugely in recent years, what’s the biggest difference in the way you do your job between 1997 and now?
“Taking technology and legislation out of the equation much has remained constant. The personal, independent service that Peter was so passionate about, setting ourselves aside from the corporate style of estate agency remains very much the same as it was 20 years ago. I have to say mobile phones, computers and wider use of the internet have moved things on a lot though!”
I know Peter Joy are renowned for staff retention but 20 years is a long time, what has kept you here and happy in your job?
“Estate agency has changed hugely over the years, with a lot more competition and red tape. But the basics still remain, good old fashioned estate agency. I love working for Peter Joy because it matters, a lot, to us all to do a great job. It’s not all about targets, form filling and hierarchy, it’s about moving people and doing the very best for our clients. Yes, 20 years is a very long time to be with one company but I knew the day Peter asked me to join him that I would be in it for the long haul. I have seen this company grow and prosper and he would be so very proud. Philippa has been an amazing boss and friend for over 20 years, I consider Peter Joy to be my extended family.”
How will you be celebrating this milestone?
“We will be celebrating with an office party in June and maybe a few G&T’s if I’m a good girl!”