Joseph Richardson

Jos Richardson & Son’s Joseph Richardson

As the managing director of a 132-year-old famiy business, it is Joseph Richardson’s priority to make Jos Richardson & Sons relevant for the next generation.

Name: Joseph Richardson

Job title: Managing director

Jos Richardson & Son is a fifth generation family business in Goole, East Yorkshire, which has been in operation since 1892. It has taken various guises over this time, with the first three generations predominantly concerned with coal wholesale and retail, as well as running farming, credit loan and travel agency businesses, with varying degrees of success, says current managing director Joseph Richardson.

Joseph joined the business in 2004 after his father had moved into running Vauxhall and Peugeot franchisees, and accident repair and recovery operations, having acquired his first garage in Goole in 1978. Joseph says rightly or wrongly he did not enjoy or see any future in the car dealership operations and so the search for petrol stations began. 

Jos Richardson & Son currently runs 10 forecourts, which have all been redeveloped with the addition of Spar convenience stores, Subways and Costa Express coffee. Its flagship site at Goole is now not only a Shell petrol station, but a high volume truckstop selling nearly 30m litres of diesel per year and parking 80 vehicles a night. An eleventh forecourt is in the pipeline at Malton in North Yorkshire, a new to industry site with a 4,200 sq ft shop. 

01. Career history: After leaving university with a business degree in 1999 I started out as a graduate in a utility company and had five years in London and Manchester before joining the family business in 2004. When I joined we had a Vauxhall and Peugeot car dealership and one Shell petrol station. Now we have 10 fuel and convenience sites, a truckstop and commercial property, and are completely out of car dealerships. Currently we are doing a KFC, Starbucks and EV development and are still looking to acquire more sites.

Dream job: Not so much a job as a purpose perhaps, but something involving being outdoors more and less stress. I’m 46 now and this will be a reality one day soon!

03: What do you drive? Audi Q8 e-tron

04: Perfect day: A day of test cricket with friends and family. The sun is shining with lovely food and wine and England thrash Australia. In the evening, we go to watch the American rock band Pearl Jam, then more drinks and a lie in to follow.  

05: Best holiday: So many to mention, but we recently had a family holiday in Croatia which was beautiful and enjoyed by all.

06: Holiday wish-list: I have travelled to many places but top of the list of places I haven’t been to is Japan. I’d love to understand more about the culture and explore the whole country, not just the major cities.

07: Favourite read: Material World by Ed Conway. 

08: Three words to describe yourself: Open minded, thoughtful and a good listener.

09: Possessions you could not do without: I’m really not material at all, in fact I think the pursuit of material things causes so much unhappiness in the world. So, I’ll say my house, car and the latest book I’m reading.

10: What do you most admire? Someone who possesses exceptional expertise in their area, but is humble with it. Also, someone who listens, it is amazing how many people don’t!

11: Favourite sports person: The golfer Tiger Woods.

12: Best news over the past 12 months: The worst and best news this year is that my wife received a breast cancer diagnosis in September, but thankfully we caught it early. She has had an operation and treatment, and is doing well.

13: Recent achievements: Being there for my family

14: What’s your pet peeve: Various versions of people not doing what they say they are going to do.

15: Biggest fear: I suppose I live in a constant mini state of fear that I will mess things up, but in business I think a little bit of worry is probably a good thing.

16: Most important qualities in the workplace: Integrity, reliability and no-nonsense hard work.

17: What motivates you? It has evolved over the years. At first I wanted to ensure the family business was relevant to at least allow me to have a career, now this is changing to make sure we are relevant for future generations.

18: Best thing about the job: Being able to drive the strategy of my own business. We are not the biggest and don’t want to be, but I have derived a lot of pleasure in being involved from the start to end of a project.

19: Best bit of business advice you have ever received: Listen to people who know more than you, they will teach you everything you need to know.  

20: Most recent business achievement of note. We have received planning for an extension to our lorry park at our flagship site in Goole East Yorkshire, including for a drive-thru and EV scheme, with industrial units. Also we have recently completed on a new to industry site in Malton, in North Yorkshire.