Context and Challenge
Having joined this major UK print services company direct from school at the age of 16, and worked his way up through the ranks, the client was asked to take on the role of CEO. Merryck was asked to help him through this key transition by providing experience, external perspective and a clear sense of what was to come.
A key breakthrough happened at the initial retreat. The client was extremely animated and passionate when talking about family and life away from work, but became very serious and cautious when talking about work. The important inquiry was around how he could bring the same sense of energy and passion to his work and develop a style of leadership which was authentically “him” rather than a model he had built up of the “ideal” CEO. Another Merryck faculty member was introduced to help with the new challenge of dealing with the investor community. Specific work on presentation skills, and how to be in control without controlling, enabled the client to take the company on a new course.
Despite a difficult market the company built up a substantial cash reserve, drove through significant productivity improvement measures and established a dominant market position. As a result the share price doubled over a period of 18 months.
“Whilst it was a great honour to be asked to become the CEO of the company I had worked for man and boy it was also a daunting responsibility, and one for which I had little preparation. The key insights gained from the interaction with my mentor enabled me to be effective much more quickly.”