On 20th June 2018, we had a representative from the Living Wage Foundation visit our office in Glenrothes and spoke to our Chief Executive, Bob Bazley.
"This month we visited Cairn Mhor Childcare Partnership in Fife. Formed 15 years ago by Dorothy Markham, the company offer residential care services for young people across x4 homes in Fife. Employing 53 staff, Cairn Mhor is headquartered in Airlie House Glenrothes.
The motto of the organisation “Be all you can be” is proudly displayed on the walls. Bob Bazley CEO, has been involved with the running of company since 2016, who himself grew up in residential care as a child.
Around 70% of Cairn Mhor’s workforce are care workers, with additional housekeepers, cooks and admin staff. When recruiting, the priority is the right attitude followed by qualifications. Bob reflected: “This work can be intense, and sometimes upsetting or stressful. Our recruitment process ensures people can be reflective in their day-to-day work, and that they can seek support and give support to their colleagues. We actively hire people who can demonstrate a solid approach to teamwork.” The teamwork is something he carried forward from his Army career.
Bob tells us about the aspirational culture at Cairn Mhor:
“Our goal is to become the premier service. We take a holistic approach to create a positive culture, and strive to treat people fairly in all aspects of our work. This means things like paying the Living Wage, but also paying people enough when they are off sick. It’s paying for things like physio therapy, or offering complementary counselling, and looking at our day-to-day procedures to ensure staff have the chance to offload concerns. We commit to valuing each person and supporting them to develop personally and professionally too… every little thing matters, each making an incremental difference to the whole package of fairness for our staff”.
Bob himself is what we would describe as a Living Wage Champion. He led the accreditation journey for Cairn Mhor, as well as ensuring his own IT company (Netopa Ltd) was also accredited.
As Chairperson on the board of a charitable trust "Muirhead Outreach Project" – Bob is supporting their accreditation journey too.
He tells us: “I want to make a difference, and the Living Wage is a small part of that. It’s about challenging the norms and asking – why are we still doing things this way? It’s about small changes to create the type of society we want to live in”.
On visiting the Glenrothes headquarters, we found on his white board a statement that read, “The best way to cope with change is to help create it”, and we couldn’t have said it better."