Farm machinery firm director celebrates 40 years of dedicated service
A long-serving director of a Norfolk farm machinery firm has celebrated a milestone with his colleagues after dedicating 40 years to the company.
Jimmy Lockhart joined Trowse-based John Deere dealer Ben Burgess as an agricultural service apprentice in July 1980, working at what was then the head office and main workshop in the centre of Norwich.
Ten years later he became agricultural service manager, a position he held for more 21 years. During this time, he was appointed as a director with responsibility for the group’s parts and service departments, and he also oversaw the group’s IT infrastructure. Since 2011, he has focused more on the strategic side of what the company calls “aftermarket solutions”.
Mr Lockhart will receive his official long service award later in the year, but his anniversary was celebrated with a special presentation this week, where he received a cake and treated his colleagues to memories of his time at Ben Burgess, including working on his first tractor – a Track Marshall 90 – and how he still has his lunchbox from his very first days.
He said: “My motivation and reason to be has always been and continues to be the delivery of premium parts and service support. As I always tell my teams, I want customer delight.
“Above all perhaps, the most pleasurable part of my job is when I recruit people I believe have the raw talent we need, and I see them develop through training and mentoring, and progress within the company.”
Mr Lockhart’s daughter Polly said: “He has been a director at the company for almost 20 years now but for me, it’s the farming testimonies and dedication to service that makes me so proud. I have yet to speak to a farmer, employee or customer who doesn’t comment on his commitment, knowledge and complete love of the job and industry.”
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