The business of being a leader
The life of a CEO can be lonely. Decisions need to be made that are sometimes unpopular, harsh or even against the grain of a personal stance. CEOs may at times be at loggerheads with staff, upper management and even business partners.
Generally, CEOs make decisions that are in the best interests of the company and its shareholders. Meanwhile they have to balance these decisions with the best interest of its clients or consumers. Being the CEO can be the greatest juggling act in the world.
Business First’s purpose is to make it easier for CEOs to make the hard decisions. This is a peer-topeer magazine: written by CEOs and other high level executives, with interviews with some of the country’s best leaders.
Take Sony DADC’s Darren Houghton for instance. Here’s a man who steered Sony UK through the worst of the London riots, lost millions of dollars worth of stock, but still managed to turn a profit. He was seconded to Australia and has overseen some large acquisitions as well as a major change on the technology front. Darren has a lot of advice to offer on several issues that affect the day-to-day running of a business, as well as the importance of looking ahead.
Our cover story features Allan Jones. Not the shock jock, or the singer, but the English engineer who during his time at Woking, reduced CO2 emissions by 77.5% from 1990 levels to 2004 and undertook groundbreaking work on energy and water efficiency. He did the same in the Greater City of London, when then Mayor Ken Livingston recruited Jones to head up his new climate change agency as chief executive officer. Jones has been hired by the City of Sydney to turn Sydney into one of the most sustainable cities in the world. Some of Jones’ battles in achieving this have included regulatory restrictions and private company risk assessment concerns. Allan is well versed in overcoming a large number of hurdles, but you get the feeling that by 2030, Sydney will have easily reached its energy reduction targets.
There are some great features in this inaugural issue of Business First. We speak with Arthur Essey and Alessandro Garofalo about distribution, Gavin Ward about the competitive nature of office supplies, Mark Davis about customer service in banking and Luke Herbert about the value of team players.
There are many other great CEOs featured in this issue and we hope you learn as much from them as we have.
Some of the contributors you will become familiar with are MYOB CEO Tim Reed, Image Group International CEO Jon Michail, Asia expert Pamela Young and Marketing Eye MD Mellissah Smith. Meanwhile Lauretta Stace, CEO of Fitness Australia will give her views on how important it is to stay healthy while dealing with the stresses of the day.
Finally, when all the hard work is done, it’s time to relax with a fine bottle of wine, a good place to eat, a relaxing place to rest and a comfortable car to drive. You’ve worked hard, you deserve to be pampered.
So welcome to Business First, a magazine for you, written by your peers.