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My invitation to Buckingham Palace

8th April 2020

Close your eyes and picture this – on 11th June 2019 I found myself standing in the opulent surroundings of Buckingham Palace, asking myself how I got to this point in my life.  Less than 9 years ago I was working on an idea in my garden shed: fast-forward less than a decade and here I am receiving a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise, by none other than Her Majesty The Queen herself.

It was back in 2011 that my joint co-founder, Derrick and I joined forces to create a radically different facilities management (FM) company – Cloudfm.  With a background in facilities management, we shared a vision, born from our struggle with the flaws and limitations in traditional FM models, to transform and restore trust in this failing industry.  And it was from sheer frustration, passion and belief, that led us to create Cloudfm.

What did we develop?  A transformative technology led solution.  Why does it work?  Because it corrects failures in conventional ways of operating. How do we deliver it?  With investment in technology and our people.

We invested in our very own purpose-built training academy and opened it to all our employees, our clients and our suppliers.  With highly specialised trainers, we provide the best training opportunities to learn new skills, broaden skillsets, and progress – not just within the business but for our employees’ future careers as well.  And we continually invest in developing our people to ensure that all teams, at all levels of the organisation, are the most highly skilled in the industry – and the most effective.

I truly believe that it is because of this investment and trust in our teams, our suppliers, and working in partnership with our clients, that following a highly competitive process, Cloudfm was presented with this incredibly sought-after award.  An award received for our outstanding contribution to an industry,  our continued commercial success, and one where we were commended for correcting failures in the conventional ways of operating.

This is how I got to be invited to Buckingham Palace – for thinking beyond the realms of possibility.

When travelling to London with my colleague James, Chief Systems Architect, we were excited, proud, and as you can imagine, nervous.  The invitation to Buckingham Palace was something that neither of us ever thought in a million years that we’d ever receive. It was such an incredible honour. As we approached the Palace, driving between Union Jacks flagging the driveway, we felt really humbled.

At the gates, it was an absolute honour to walk the red carpet into Buckingham Palace. James and I were absolutely blown away by the sheer magnificence of the location. It took us some time to take it all in. We were there of course, to represent not only ourselves and our fellow co-founder Derrick Hidden, but also every single member of our team that has contributed to our win of such a prestigious award. It was a tremendous privilege to meet HRH The Prince of Wales, along with other members of the Royal Family and our fellow award winners, and to truly understand the significance of receiving such an accolade.

It’s hard to believe that this is the first time a maintenance company has been credited for innovation in 10 years, and the first time ever that a Hard Services Provider had secured the award. The award recognises our outstanding contribution to the FM industry, and I can tell you – that feels good. Not to mention the fact that it’s personally approved by Her Majesty The Queen.

It is a huge honour to receive a Queens Award and I hope that our recognition will inspire you to think innovatively, focus your passion, and believe in yourself and others.

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