Paul and his team digging the dream
Marlborough based PR Leslie Contracting Ltd and Leslie Bros. Ag. Contracting Ltd’s balanced approach to business was recently recognised at the Marlborough Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards.
Owned and operated by Paul Leslie, both businesses shared the limelight when jointly awarded the Fuji Xerox Sustainable Business Award.
The judges’ comments included that there was significant emphasis placed on the management team’s focus on attracting and retaining loyal customers and employees creating an environment that offers a great place to work. “It was pretty awesome to receive the awards,” says Paul.
“But it’s not just me. You have to have a good team who all take pride and care about what they’re doing.
That is why people get us to do their work.” Paul established PR Leslie Contracting, a civil contracting operation, seven years ago to meet the needs of local builders.
Initially it was just Paul with an 8-tonne digger but through word-of-mouth the business grew rapidly and now employs five full timers, plus machinery ranging from 5tonne – 25tonne diggers with more hired as needed.
A brand new 6-wheeler DAF truck joined an older unit last year. The truck sides can be removed for versatility, enabling them to be used as flat decks when required.
Brothers Phil and John have also joined the business, with Phil looking after PR Leslie Contracting on a day-to-day basis when Paul is more actively engaged in the agricultural contracting business he established three seasons ago.
Based between Havelock and Picton along Queen Charlotte Drive, PR Leslie Contracting’s office window is spectacular, though Paul says its one often taken for granted.
“We do everything right out to the Sounds and all round Marlborough. We’re doing work at Ward at the moment of all places. The builders like using us because we get what they want to do and we are the men on the tools. We go wherever the builders are, get the job done as efficiently and as tidily as we can and always work with the builders instead of making it hard.”
The civil contracting business does all site works’ preparation for construction including earthworks for house sites, retaining walls, augering holes for pole sheds and houses and retaining walls. For Paul, the success of his business is all about the people he works with.
“We are a family orientated business and I’m very proud but it certainly isn’t all my doing.
I can’t stress enough that you have to have good people who take pride in what they do.
“We are bloody lucky that we have that. They are pretty versatile sort of jokers.
If the diggers are quiet, they can jump on a truck or a tractor if need be and they are happy to do that.”
Office manager Melissa Bryne seamlessly attends to all backroom support including health and safety.
Paul says that they would all be lost without her skills and efficiency and it was through her initiative that both businesses were entered into the awards.