L M B Group

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by L M B Group's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from L M B Group is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles


Andrew Bean, managing
John Lewis plantroom,
Based in Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire, LMB Mechanical
Services Ltd, a mechanical and electrical company, has
a strong focus on its staff – seeing them not merely as
numbers on a sheet, but as people without whom the company
would be nothing. This attitude results in teams that genuinely
want to get the job done, which in turn leads to a high-
performing company. Although based in Yorkshire, their remit
spans the entire country, working wherever demand exists. Key
to getting this work, too, is their commitment to maintaining
good relationships within the industry. The following Review
article provides a more in-depth description of the company
and their workings, written by their managing director,
Who we are and what we do
We are predominantly a subcontractor working for large construction companies,
local councils and private architects in the UK, for whom a normal project would
be won via competitive tender. All the operatives we employ are City & Guilds
or NVQ-qualified, DBS-checked, hold the recognised certifications required for
working on site and are kept up to date with regular “tool box talks” and Health
and Safety awareness training. We provide an integrated mechanical and electrical
project team, or alternatively, separate mechanical or electrical services to suit our
»Managing director:
»Established in 2007
»Based in Cleckheaton,
»Services provided: Mechanical
and electrical contractor
»No. of employees: 50
»Turnover: £11 million
»We carried out the mechanical
services work on the
Tutankhamun exhibition at the
Millennium Dome
»We carried out the
refurbishment works of the
old Conservative HQ in Smith
LMB Mechanical
Services Ltd
Highlighting best practice
Although our projects are fairly normal
– that is, schools, hospitals, prisons,
office blocks, we have also undertaken
other notable projects such as John
Lewis White City, O2 and Birmingham
New Street. We stand out most when
it comes to the emphasis we place on
people by successfully providing a first
class service to our clients. Getting
work is not a problem for us and
we’ve never had to engage in heavy
marketing efforts. The majority of our
work therefore, comes from word
of mouth and repeat business. Since
2007, our work has been with many
of the same clients. One might think
that this signals a lack of projects, but
we are regularly receiving many dozens
of enquiries per month. There is no
paucity in this regard.
Treating people as people
Of course, it is not enough to simply
have good relationships: you must also
perform the job to a high standard,
which is far from easy in an industry
like ours. Much of construction is
managing unforeseen circumstances
and engaging in chaos control. Our
clients have to be certain that we
can rise to these challenges – more
importantly, we have to gain their trust
by actually rising to these challenges
ourselves. Working in a prison, for
example, presents our teams with
problems unique in nature (as one
might expect), and we must have the
resilience and adaptability to withstand
such unfamiliar territory.
To be able to expect this of our
staff, however, must mean that they
sincerely feel connected to the team,
the company and the project of which
they are part. To win this kind of
sincerity requires me, as head of the
company, to remain loyal to my staff.
This means treating them with respect
and valuing their contributions not just
as workers but as people, resulting in
the continued success of the company.
Were it not for them, the company
would be nothing. The construction
sector can be trying at the best of
times, so winning staff loyalty is a
necessity – something that cannot go
John Lewis, Leeds:
rooftop services
The majority
of our work
comes from
word of
mouth and
Overcoming challenges
As mentioned earlier, with construction
come many challenges, but the
one that currently stands out for us
is staffing. Although we have the
requisite core staff on the books, there
are still those summer months (our
busiest times) when these alone are
not enough. We therefore have to rely
on agency staff and subcontractors.
This can occasionally require seven
days a week of work. Leaving the
European Union may also be a
disadvantage in this regard. Another
challenge we experience – one that we
often hear about in our sector – relates
to payment terms, that is, the speed
with which payments are made in our
industry. These can be needlessly and
frustratingly slow across the industry.
It’s also necessary, we feel, that
we combat the prevailing negative
perception of our industry among the
public, namely that we are disrespectful
of the environments we work in.
Although this has some basis in some
corners of the sector, this is not a fair
overall assessment of the industry,
and much less so of my company in
particular. We work hard, therefore, to
ensure that everyone in the company
causes as little frustration to the public
Optimism moving forward
With all that said, there is still much
to look forward to. At the moment
we have seen a considerable increase
in the number of projects, suggesting
buoyancy in the general market (good
news for us, with the exception of
slighter tighter margins). Moreover,
we are a company regularly operating
on a profit – indeed, it’s no needless
exaggeration to say we are one of
the most successful mechanical and
electrical companies in West Yorkshire,
not least because our work spans the
entire country.
Moreover, with leadership, drive,
commitment and a great team our
business has grown and continues
to do so. In fact, since our inception
11 years ago, we have experienced
growth every financial year. In 2017,
due to the growth of our company
it was necessary to move into larger
offices, an old school house dating
back to 1850, offering facilities for
further expansion. Given the increased
buoyancy of the market, we can only
expect this trend to continue into the
future. For us, it is primarily a matter
of ensuring that we have great staff,
do a great job and establish trust with
We are one of
the most
and electrical
companies in
Ductwork in roof void at
Berendsen in Durham


This article was sponsored by L M B Group. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng.

Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng

This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.

In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.

We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.

With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.

And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.

As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy