Episode show notes

Few kitchens in the UK will be unfamiliar with COOK, a business whose youthful ambitions fuelled the success of their award-winning brand.

There’s a delightful culture and commitment to quality shared by Co-CEOs Edward Perry and Rosie Brown, who share just a slice of that passion on this week’s ‘It Runs In The Family’.

Join us as we dive into the parental roots of their entrepreneurialism, how naivety was a superpower in the early days, and the lasting confidence that external hires bring to the business.

This episode covers:

  • The parents’ batch cooking that inspired the first foray into frozen food
  • How naivety gave them the ambition to grow the business
  • Culture, values, and a sustained commitment to quality
  • The affirmation that external team members bring
    A graphic with Robin, Judy and Ollie.

    Episode highlights

    “We got going on an absolute shoestring. But the difficult part was trying to make the food taste good. Easier said than done, making frozen food at scale look and taste homemade.” – 5:20 – Edward Perry

    “Knowing what we know now, if anybody suggested to me that they were going to do something similar to what we did, I’d tell them that they were completely mad, you can’t do that. It’s impossible. So naivety was a huge, huge advantage.” – 11:50 – Edward Perry 

    “The thing that enables it, that makes the food taste a bit better, the kind of hospitality that we can give in our shops is just a bit better than other people’s as well, it’s actually the culture and the values that underpin that culture.” – 17:45 – Edward Perry 

    “Quality is never an accident. It’s always the result of intentional efforts, and actually making sure that intentional effort is maintained, and the discipline of that.” – 22:30 – Rosie Brown

    “That external perspective to say, ‘No, we’re good here’, like people who have worked and are working in other businesses, can provide a level of confidence, which is very helpful as well.” – 27:15 – Rosie Brown

    “There’s no ‘Right, you must join the family business’. That’s not how we roll. But maybe one of the kids will want to in a few years time. So we’re just beginning to think about what that would look like, but this is definitely not a succession-type business.” – 36:00 – Edward Perry 

    “If you don’t trust the people you’re working with right at the top, and I mean really trust, then you need to do something about that, because it’s unlikely to work out. Trust is the most important thing. ” – 40:50 – Edward Perry

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