CREATIVE agency owner Jake Jeffries is giving staff a stake in its future by giving away a fifth of his company to them.
The 35-year-old has launched an Enterprise Management Initiative which will entitle staff to shares in the Chippenham company. He has put 20 per cent of his shares into the scheme to be divided among staff who qualify.
Three members of senior staff will be the first to benefit but Mr Jeffries said the scheme will be open to all staff. “When someone has given five years’ service they could qualify, or it could be an incentive for excellent performance,” he said.
“Having someone in a junior role who qualifies for the scheme is a great incentive for everyone because it shows the rewards are not just there for senior staff, that’s not what it is about.”
Creative director Mr Jeffries, who bought out web design partner Boson Media in 2021, said he has been thinking about introducing the scheme for a while. “It’s been on my mind ever since I took on the business to be honest,” he said. “Throughout my career I have wanted to be involved in in all aspects and departments to help contribute to their success.
“I’ve known other companies who’ve run an EMI scheme for key members of staff and I’ve had good feedback about the benefits.”
He believes having the share incentive will be good for the agency’s culture. “I don’t want it to be just me that gets the rewards, it’s nice that everyone benefits from it and rewarding staff is a really nice feeling,” he said.
“It’s a reward for loyalty and it’s great for the staff to feel part of something and have a little bit of ownership. Rewarding the staff will help us to grow the company together and give them a benefit in the long run.”
He said the incentive could also help with staff retention. “It shows that our company has the right values and attitude towards our staff and that is really important nowadays,” he said. “I spend a lot of time thinking about the culture of Milk & Tweed and this can only improve it.”
The agency, which specialises in website, brand and logo design and digital marketing, now has ten staff and turned over £570,000 last year. It is on course to continue its growth in 2023/24.
“We’ve been fortunate to bring on board a broad range of fantastic clients from all over Wiltshire and across the country over the past year and a great deal of that success is down to our team and the way they embrace our focus on quality and customer service,” said Mr Jeffries.
“If we were to sell up in ten or 15 years’ time there would be a lot of us celebrating rather than just me. Having a bit of a cash lump sum can really set people up when they are thinking about houses and families and the thought of that gives me as much satisfaction as anything else.”
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