About the Author
Rob's career began when his father decided to resign his partnership in the family quantity surveying firm in order to fulfil a lifelong ambition and set up a business selling models and hobbies supplies. Rob spent six years with his father, learning how to establish a small business and make it a success. The company prospered, twice relocated to larger premises and became well known for its legendary service.
Following some time out back-packing abroad Rob joined a leading consumer goods company with an outstanding reputation for training as a salesman, before being promoted through various sales roles and then on to lead the divisional sales training function at head office. A move to another highly regarded consumer goods business followed, where Rob rapidly established a strong reputation for sales and account management, progressing through the UK organisation in a series of increasingly senior roles.
Keen to get into a fast paced service based business Rob subsequently joined an ambitious regional dealer of office products and set about introducing a strong sales and service culture. Early success was followed by a promotion to Sales Director at the time the business was acquired by a leading multinational player in office products. Sales subsequently more than doubled in four years. Rob was then appointed Managing Director and took the business into profits whilst continuing the stellar sales growth. During this time Rob developed a number of initiatives to improve employee engagement and productivity. Success in the 'Sunday Times Top 100' places to work followed, as did promotion to the role of European Managing Director and a relocation to Brussels.
Rob was subsequently attracted to another multi-national office products reseller who was keen to build on its success in direct mail with expansion into a new sales channel. With a remit to plan, launch and roll out a pan-European business to rival the best in the market Rob set about turning the dream into reality. Following a year of intense planning and preparation the business was launched in the UK and subsequently rolled out across Europe. Sales hit a run rate of €130m in year three. Promotion followed and Rob now found himself responsible for European operations for the combined direct mail, online, and contract office supplies businesses.
A change in leadership at the parent company brought a shift in thinking and Rob subsequently returned to the UK to take up a role as CEO of what at the time was Europe's largest wholesale distributor of office products with operations in eight countries. In this role Rob was able to lead the company to both sales and significant profits growth, despite the unfavourable market conditions of the time.
An unexpected opportunity to become European President of the world's leading office products reseller then presented itself in 2009 and Rob spent the last years of his executive career leading some 10,000 people across Europe in the integration of a string of 34 separate businesses across three very different channels. He retired from full time executive work at the end of 2012.
Rob now helps leaders and managers to get the best results from their organisations and people. He has spent many years understanding, digesting and successfully applying the simple yet incontrovertible principles that underpin great leadership and management in the workplace. Rob rejects the idea of the 'silver bullet' and is a passionate believer in the consistent application of sound and established management and leadership practices that are neither hard to learn or apply. The problem is that most managers and leaders are too busy 'running the shop' and need help, support and guidance in order to develop and apply these critical skills and processes. The difference it can make to results is truly remarkable!