Kinloch Anderson, an Edinburgh family company since 1868 are renowned experts in kilts, tartans and all aspects of Highland Dress. Deirdre Kinloch Anderson married into the family firm and shares her thoughts.
What does your family business do?
Scottish Clothing and textiles, renowned for kilts and Highland Dress, also wholesale and skirt production, tartan design and Brand Development in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and China.
How did you get involved?
Married into the 5th generation
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Initially the first ever lady mounted Policewoman! Then social worker. Then working with publication of Children’s school books in foreign languages.
What are your first memories of the family business?
My husband was dedicated to making it ever more successful and wanted me to be interested and involved when appropriate.
What values are important in your family/family business?
To be a role model for Scotland, upholding the highest principles of integrity and service.
What is the best thing about being a family business?
For us, personally, the lifestyle that goes with it, the places we go to and the people we meet. Commercially, when we have made a decision we can go ahead and do it.
And the worst?
The demands and pressure of the ultimate responsibility.
What is the best thing about your working day?
Working with a great team of people in our Company. There’s always a new challenge.
What is your proudest family business achievement?
There have been so many over the 145 years: Queen’s Award for Export in 1979, Douglas Kinloch Anderson OBE in 1983, Award for Business Excellence Scotland 1999, Deirdre Kinloch Anderson OBE 2010, but most important is always thinking ahead.
Is there a next generation waiting in the wings to take over?
2 sons: 6th generation in the Company in their early 40’s. One is Chief Executive and the other is Director of Brand Development.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing family businesses?
Same as for other companies, the challenge and competition of the workplace.
What words do you associate with family businesses?
For us: Scottish, Authentic, Creative, Experienced, Enterprising, Discerning, Dependable, Global
Words of wisdom – What piece of advice would you pass on to someone thinking about joining the family business?
First take time to learn as much as you can about our Company. Then always look for new opportunities, new developments so that we can remain world leaders in our niche market.