Fantastic working flexibly
Jodie Keenan loves the fact that Griffin’s supports their employees to achieve a better work-life balance. Since starting in the marketing team in 2010 she’s had two children and managed to adapt her role to meet the needs of her growing family. She feels supported by Griffin’s to grow in her career, while also valuing her role as a mother.
For her that meant adapting her hours and days of work, both when she had her first child and also when she had her second.
Jodie finds the people and culture at Griffin’s “fantastic”. The cross functionality and diversity of the business has empowered her to become a great marketer with an understanding of the end-to-end business. Griffin’s is actively encouraging a more flexible culture – in their new office there are no fixed desks to enable employees to work collaboratively, cross functionally and flexibly.
“Griffin’s is moving towards flexible working, flexible hours – to work when it works for you. It’s really worked for me and [they have] accommodated me, which has made me value the company so much more. I really enjoy working here with great people, a great culture and fantastic products"
Global growth for international experience
Michelle Sanchez is making the most of the amazing opportunities that come with working for an international company. She has been seconded from the Philippines to New Zealand by URC, Griffin’s parent company. For 16 months Michelle gets to live and breathe the New Zealand way of doing business. She says it’s a great example of the interaction between Griffin’s and URC.
Griffin’s and URC value this type of international experience and are committed to developing their employees and helping them grow and learn within the company. Michelle says, “I am not the only one – since URC acquired Griffin’s in 2014, they have been sending people from NZ to the Philippines to experience that intercultural interaction. It’s about developing that cross functional interaction between the two companies.”
Michelle has also enjoyed the flexibility and work-life balance that Griffin’s offer, allowing her to work “where you want and when you want.” For her this is driven by the need to communicate with the Philippines team who are 4-5 hours behind New Zealand. So she sometimes works in the evening, giving her free time in the morning to do her own thing.
“It shows the trust between managers and their team, which I think is a big thing. It’s cool because everyone has their different work style, so it’s flexible and it’s awesome, actually.
“It’s a great place to work because it opens up boundaries – it’s not just a New Zealand company now. It encompasses the entire parent company footprint, so you’re not bound by opportunities just within NZ.”
Vaibhav “Vee” Tanksale
Pride in an iconic Kiwi brand
Vee has dedicated over seven years to working at Griffin’s and in that time he has progressed through a number of roles all the way up to Manufacturing Manager. For him, it’s the sense of pride in an iconic Kiwi brand that motivates him.
“One of the things that attracts me to working for Griffin’s is, it’s really cool to be involved with an iconic NZ company. It’s a really good feeling to walk out there and say we are one of the best manufacturers in NZ, and I am the Manufacturing Manager for it.”
Vee also credits the people at Griffin’s for making it such an attractive place to work. He says they have always been supportive of whatever role he’s been in and helped him succeed, with great career progression through supportive managers and training.
For Vee, the opportunities at Griffin’s have been limitless.
“The opportunity is there, the company doesn’t limit you – I would always recommend Griffin’s as a place to work.”
Growing with Griffin’s
David Mael is the ultimate example of growing with a company – he started out at The Griffin’s Food Company in 1974 in the production team, learning all the equipment. At the time, he saw it as a great opportunity to get himself established in life – work for a reliable company, a well-known brand, get some skills, experience, and even a mortgage!
As time went on, David was happy to work at Griffin’s in many different roles over the years – there’s been a real opportunity for career progression. Stepping into leadership was “daunting at the time,” he says, but the crew around him were encouraging and supported him to grow. He was even supported to complete US correspondence studies.
At one stage he was sent to China to set up a plant – a huge turning point in his career, he says. Since then he’s travelled all over the world with Griffin’s – to America, Japan, France, Fiji and Thailand.
David is really impressed with Griffin’s employee training scheme, which helps people come in at the ground level and work their way up the company. He says the scheme is great because “you don’t get stuck in one job – you learn it and move on and grow with the company.” He sees the scheme as benefiting both the company and the employee.
In recent years, David has enjoyed being part of the “stable, strong, well-educated” technical team.
“We feed off one another so I really enjoy it still. I’m not the only one, there are many others who have been here for 20 plus years and still love it too.”
10 years and still loving the challenges
South Island Regional Sales Manager Daryl Austin says The Griffin’s Food Company keeps him busy and challenged every day.
He’s been in his current role for four years, and during that time hasn’t had two days alike. Daryl says there’s a variety of work to be done each week and he enjoys adapting to shifts in the market.
“I think that’s why I’ve stayed. It’s always changing. We have such a strong and broad portfolio, it’s not the same old-same old every day and the rewards at the end of it are great as well.”
Daryl joined the Griffin’s Food company when Nice & Natural was acquired in 2007, working first as a territory manager in Christchurch. The capacity to move around in different roles is also part of what has kept things fresh over his decade with the company.
Challenging and engaging work can often come at a price, impacting on time spent with family. For Daryl, that simply wasn’t an option. He says the company’s flexibility means that he can sometimes work from home and be there for his family.
“You’ve got to have time for your family – they motivate and encourage me. I wouldn’t have stayed so long with a company that didn’t support that”.