Love From Howden


Valentine's Day is observed by many people all around the world. Roses will be purchased, poems written, and loved ones serenaded. Restaurants will be booked far in advance, and couples will reconnect on what is the most 'red' day of them all. The day has come a long way from its pagan roots and Chaucer's poem for Richard II, which could be the first written example of the day becoming tied to Love. Nowadays it is a festival of cards and flowers, music and poetry and has been a key theme in more Hollywood films than perhaps any other day! But 'Love is all around', and it is not just the preserve of couples in relationships, we experience love for others, love for pets, love for sports/pastimes/hobbies and indeed love for the work we do and the workplace that we spend so much of our time in.

Love from Howden on Valentines day

Why love in the workplace is important

To be the best or the "world's leading" (as we at Howden strive to be) requires more than just lean processes and conveyer belt type work, it requires passion, dedication, inspiration, desire and a host of other strong human emotions and traits underpinned by Love. A love of doing the job right and making sure that our product is exactly as we desire it to be.

When we dedicate our self to a job, which may involve personal sacrifices, be they time, energy or more, we don't do it just because we are getting paid. There are other factors at play that drive us to keep going when it gets tough, Maslow identified a hierarchy of needs, and while the bottom of the pyramid relates fairly directly to pay, that which comes above is critical to the workplace, and it is no surprise that the word Love appears.

Safety is a key part of love

Safety is a key priority for Howden. We believe that it is imperative that every person who works for Howden goes home in the same shape that they arrived. Our Safe Home Howden and Summer of Safety campaigns have raised awareness of potential issues and has allowed us to share best practices amongst our thousands of employees. Maslow identified Safety as the second level of need, and if employees are to excel and exceed expectations (both that of the business and their own), then they need a safe place to work.

We tend to shy away from using strong emotive words like 'love' in the workplace, but it is love that ensures that we keep ourselves and others safe. When we walk past the defibrillator on the wall and check that the green light is on, that is love; when we scold the person not paying attention as they walk through the factory, that is love; when we mop up some spilt water, that is love. All these acts and the many more we perform, are done to benefit others and ensure their safety, they are altruistic, selfless … Love.

Loving your job

We are striving to be the World's leading application engineer, we cannot do that with unmotivated staff who dislike their job. Our staff go that extra mile, they give more than they thought they could, they stretch themselves to achieve, they fly around the world, give up their time to make sure that our customers get the best. They do this for Love. It is Love that enables us to raise ourselves higher, to inspire those around us and to allow us to be the very best supportive people for our customers.

Our Love for Engineering

James Howden started that Howden company over 160 years ago, and he is still talked of fondly in the Howden offices. His love for engineering saw him develop his company into a major engineering company that developed a range of new inventions, including the force draught boiler for ships, which was such an important development. We are made of some of the finest engineering brands…

  • Roots: The Roots brothers perfected the Rotary PD Blower in Connersville, and in that community the Roots firm has been a core part of so many people’s lives. Hardly a family exists which has not worked and lived their lives in the Howden Roots business
  • Kühnle, Kopp & Kausch: Our KK&K brand factory takes up a large part of Frankenthal and it has a long history in that community
  • Solyvent: This year Howden Solyvent will celebrate 100 year of their brand, their passion and love for their brand is inspiring and again they form a key part of their community in Meyzieu

There will be many more within Howden questioning why their brand has not been included in the short list above. It is love for their brand that will make them question their omission. I am genuinely sorry, but there was only so much I could add.

Our love for innovation

When Maria Wilson takes the stage in front of thousands of attendees (and many more streaming online) as a Keynote speaker, it is love for her job and her product that rid her of nerves, and that same infectious love that makes everyone pay attention and engage and share her message. Innovation is hard, it takes effort, grit, and determination and … love. We love to innovate, we love bringing new products, such as Uptime (which Maria was talking about) and our configured screw compressor package, to market.

What I love is the excitement DDA is always generating, with our fellow Howden-eers as well as our customers. I love the ever growing team of DDA supporters and stakeholders across the wider organisation. I love that we are living our values and have embraced our heritage of being early innovators in rotating equipment design and manufacturing to become leading innovators in digital. I love that we have accepted the risk of the unknown and defined our own rules of digital transformation to support one thing: creating customer value. I love Mondays and I love travelling the world to tell our story. What I loved the most about being the keynote speaker at PTC Forum Europe in Stuttgart (Nov 28th, 2018) was getting the chance to tell our story of transformation to the world and receiving incredible feedback ever since. So many organisations found value in our approach and are now rethinking their digital transformation and the best part is that Howden is recognised as a trend setter for digital.

Maria Wilson Global Leader Data Driven Advantage, Howden

Love is a key human emotion, and on Valentine's Day, Howden would like to take this opportunity to send you, our customer, our love and to thank all our associates for the love they show Howden, which allows us to be the World’s leading application engineer.