Autumn Moir is the third generation of the Moir family working in the family-run commercial flue and chimney company A1 Flue Systems. At the tender age of 22, her family still see her as a trainee who is learning her trade, even though she has already won an award for running one subsidiary business and now she’s on to her second one.
She spent her formative years at the family’s factory. As soon as she was old enough, she began getting involved in many facets of the business: she’s worked in the company’s engineering department, its office, on the factory floor and even onsite with the installation of flue systems.
Like every other family member at A1, she has had to start at the bottom. But her true impact on the business is starting to show as a result of her studying a BTEC in Business and Finance at Lincoln College alongside working 2½ days each week at A1. Much of the skills and knowledge she developed at college she has been able to apply to the business – such as delivering refresher training on Sage to A1’s accounts department. Her knowledge of business law and business finance has been fed through to the management team.
In 2014, she was challenged to manage the growth of CFCM Ltd, a new division of A1 that provides cleaning and maintenance for flues and chimney systems. She set about developing systems to market the service to both existing A1 customers and companies with non-A1 systems. This involved:
- Using A1’s existing data but also targeting the people responsible for the facilities management of hotels, large public buildings and university campuses
- Preparing quotes and issuing invoices
- Managing the projects for two maintenance teams (including overseeing the health & safety and programme of works
Securing a contract with Manchester University to cover all 170 of its buildings around the city is one of her crowning achievements. During that time, she oversaw a growth in turnover from £30,000 to £250,000.
At 19 years old, she was named the Best Young Person in Business at the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce (DNCC) Annual Business Awards.
Eighteen months ago, she was parachuted into A1 Expo (another subsidiary of the company that specialises in small-diameter flue systems for the domestic market, such as stove installers and retailers) because it became evident that the person originally employed to set up and run the company wasn’t working out. Autumn initially worked alongside this person but took the helm after their departure. She has steadied the ship and is responsible for:
- Ordering stock from a European supplier
- Planning the manufacturing of products, such as flue liner that is made in house
- Implementing marketing initiatives to target stove installers and retailers
Her achievements so far include:
- Growing the team from three to five people
- Delivering a turnover of £546,000
She is bright and bubbly and possesses excellent communication skills that enable her to build a rapport with staff and customers alike. She has a strong work ethic and a knack for getting things right first time.
Autumn’s achievements thus far are fully deserved because her family have made it crystal clear that she does not have a fast pass to the boardroom or the trappings that go with it. The family are acutely aware that the 150 staff at the factory expect more of her (as the daughter of the director and the granddaughter of the company’s founder) and that she has to work twice as hard to be held in the same regard as an equivalent male.