Diligent David’s gems of wisdom
FIRST JOB — AND WHERE ARE YOU NOW? My first job was at 14 as a kitchen hand at a hotel in Monmouth, Wales. I would peel 20kg bags of potatoes, wash pots and dishes and general dog’s body duties for chefs and restaurant staff.
Today, I still help out on occasions in the restaurant and jump in when required in the kitchen. Most of my time, though, is spent developing and managing the team at Paradise Resort along with the design, procurement and fit out of our latest acquisition – the Ruby Apartments; a 30-level, 243 apartment development adjacent to the current resort.
BEST BUSINESS ADVICE YOU’VE RECEIVED?
Communication, or the lack of it, is the key reason for failure, and that hindsight is the lack of foresight.
My practice is to lead by example and share with my team through regular twoway communication that outlines concise goals, a solid plan and regular updates.
WHAT YOU WISH YOU KNEW WHEN YOU FIRST STARTED OUT?
I have read and follow Richard Branson’s achievements with awe. I wish I had his tenacity in my early days. His ability to motivate, excite and drive those around him are inspiring to me.
I’ve also found that to be a leader doesn’t mean having to know everything, but you do need to know how to pick the best people available, take time to listen, offer development and give them respect by providing regular and clear expectations, along with feedback and direction.
YOUR GOLDEN RULE IN BUSINESS?
Invest time and listen carefully when choosing your team, as they are the ones who will make or break your business.
Pick people with energy, passion and a desire to learn and grow. Just because someone has experience or worked for an acclaimed company doesn’t mean they were great doing it.
A LONG LUNCH — A WASTE OF TIME OR ESSENTIAL? EXPLAIN
My lunch usually consists of a protein shake on the go, time is precious with every minute accounted for.
I personally prefer dinner with colleagues and an opportunity to relax and share some down time without cutting into my day.
WHO IS ON YOUR BUSINESS MOBILE’S SPEED DIAL?
Number one is my very talented sales and marketing manager who is my confidant, sounding board and go to person when I need to be brought back down to earth or have an idea picked to pieces. In saying that, each one of my key team make the list.
WHAT SHOULD GOLD COAST PRIMARY STUDENTS STUDY?
In the past two years I have spent time overseas researching tourism and hospitality and what’s hot and what’s not.
What has impacted me the most is the enormity of the Chinese population; their growth and development.
If there is one thing that will assist us all in the future, it is the ability to embrace their language and culture and especially the impact on all our businesses.
BIGGEST FRUSTRATION DOING BUSINESS ON THE GOLD COAST … AND HOW TO FIX IT?
Daylight saving really affects our business, especially being so close to NSW, and the many customers of ours who come from over the border.
Unfortunately, I don’t have an easy fix for this one but hope that in the not too distant future we may get the opportunity to once again revisit the issue.
David Brook at the Ruby Apartments development in Surfers Paradise.