Boss at London-based Peakon brings team to his home county in celebration of Suffolk Day

Neil Ryland of Peakon.
Picture: John Vikingholm-Nielsen

Neil Ryland of Peakon. Picture: John Vikingholm-Nielsen - Credit: Archant

A senior manager at a London-based employee engagement business who grew up in Suffolk is bringing key members of his team to his home county in celebration of Suffolk Day.

Neil Ryland at Peakon's office in London.

Neil Ryland at Peakon's office in London. - Credit: Archant

Neil Ryland, who as chief revenue officer heads commercial operations at the London office of Peakon, is staging one of the company’s regular quarterly off-site meetings at Wood Hall Manor at Sutton, near Woodbridge, preceded by breakfast at the Suffolk Food Hall at Wherstead, near Ipswich.

Neil, who lived in Suffolk until he was 18 and attended St Alban’s High School in Ipswich, said: “As a regular Radio Suffolk listener in the mornings on our Amazon echo in the office, I heard about Suffolk day and decided we should host our half-year reviews in my home county.

“Having made my team suffer from updates on Ipswich Town’s terrible season and traffic alerts on the Orwell Bridge, I decided it was time to show them why I love Suffolk so much.”

A coach has been hired to bring staff from Stratford in London to the Suffolk Food Hall – with Neil promising music from Ed Sheeran throughout the journey – and the team will then move onto Wood Hall Manor for some team exercises and presentations.

Members of the Peakon team at the company's offices in London

Members of the Peakon team at the company's offices in London - Credit: Archant

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Other plans for the day include a fish and chip lunch at Felixstowe, with time for a spot of crabbing and a go on the dodgems, and a barbecue with beers and a quiz back at Wood Hall Manor.

The designation of June 21 as Suffolk Day - the longest day of the year having been chosen for the event in recognition of the county’s status as the most easterly in the UK, where the sun rises first - is, says Neil, “a brilliant idea”.

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“I have several friends from Yorkshire who I play rugby with and they are very patriotic about their county,” he said. “We have a stunning coastline, incredible Anglo-Saxon history, famous breweries such as Greene King and Adnams and fantastic marinas.

“It’s great to have a connection to the place you call home and I love the fact that, as a county which has a rich history, wonderful people and a lot to be proud of, we are dedicating a day to celebrating it.

Colleagues at Peakon on a previous off-site visit

Colleagues at Peakon on a previous off-site visit - Credit: Archant

“I am proud to be from Suffolk, and as much as I have enjoyed travelling the world through work, there is only one place that will ever be home for me. I can’t wait to share it with my team.”

Peakon, which is based in the Danish capital Copenhagen and also has an office in Raleigh, USA, carries out engagement work on behalf of major brands including Paddy Power Betfair, Trinity Mirror, Old Mutual Wealth and Zoopla, but also for a number of smaller firms.

“What is great about the Peakon technology is that any business that cares about the people they employ can benefit from it and there is some great studies from leading consultants that directly correlates a more engaged workforce leads to increased profit,” said Neil.

And he believes the regular off-site days are a valuable part of Peakon’s own corporate culture.

“Everyone has days at work which are stressful and knowing that you have an opportunity to escape your normal work environment and the hustle and bustle of the city to enjoy time out in the country side helps prevents burn out for employees,” he added.

“Suffolk is close to London,and provides superb cost-effective opportunities for businesses to take their staff out for a couple days to re-charge and run successful company off-sites.”

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