Has the industry changed drastically since you started working in it?
Hugely, I’ve been in the industry for some 30 years now and seen massive changes, not just in terms of the obvious, e.g. fee-restructuring which culminated in the last bout of reforms, but in terms of flexible and agile working, heightened of course by the last 18 months and Covid. Furthermore, culture is something that we, as a firm, work hard to nurture consistently, with our values of Respect, Commerciality and Positivity being at the forefront.
In the height of the pandemic last year, I tried to keep staff motivated by sending out one email a day. Though that has petered off a bit now, the whole cultural and motivational emphasis is bigger than ever.
What has been the key positive, or negative, impact of change in your area of the market?
Latterly, I would suggest that the CLB reforms will see a big negative impact on our RTA side of the business. Conversely our conveyancing team have never been so busy especially with the stamp duty allowances, which is again why we put such emphasis on supporting them and their wellbeing.
Who inspires/inspired you and why?
Oh, this is a hard one! It’s a tricky one really as I tend to take inspiration from everyone I meet in and outside of work.
All the people I work with and how they deal with their own challenges has been really inspiring. Without naming names, some of my management team have had some personal challenges of late and have managed to stay so strong.
Outside of work, my hairdresser always seems to inspire me. She’s been through some illness and yet works so hard and always gives 110% of herself – her selflessness is truly admirable.
What has been the most valuable piece of advice given to you?
This would have to be my Dad. “Reach for the sky and you might touch the ceiling, only reach for the ceiling and you’ll never lift your feet off the floor.” I have lived by this mantra since I was a little girl.
If you were not in your current position, what would you have liked to have done?
Growing up my Mum was a nurse and my Dad worked in insurance. I think my Mum would have liked me to have followed her, but I am so rubbish with blood and emergencies so I think Dad would have won on that one – sorry Mum!
Personally, I always fancied teaching as an option but I honestly wouldn’t change anything. I still love my job, my firm, my colleagues and peers and industry friends as much as I have always done.
Rachel Stow is CEO at TS GROUP LTD