James Timpson

James Timpson

EFFRR Chair – James Timpson,
CEO, Timpson

James Timpson is CEO of Timpson, a family retail business based in Manchester.

Through 700 shops across the UK and Ireland Timpson is the largest shoe repairer, key cutter, engraver and watch repairer.  Timpson’s store portfolio has been increased further by the purchase of 200 Max Spielmann photo processing stores.

Over 3000 colleagues run the shops within an "upside down management" structure which Timpson has developed to ensure those serving customers are the most important in the business; everyone else is there to help.

James and his father John have created a unique business culture that is based on recruiting personalities and giving them complete authority to run their shops however they want.

Timpson’s maverick approach to recruitment has also enabled them to successfully forge relationships with prisons across the UK, working closely together to identify ‘personalities’ within the system. Training is provided to those selected with the view that upon release they may secure employment with the company.  Employees who have joined the company via this avenue are part of the ‘Timpson Foundation’, which is an internal initiative offering help and support to the individuals concerned.

Timpson has won many awards for both its customer service and its levels of employee satisfaction.