Issue 8 2023 Shonela Grabowski: Changing the Perspective on Sales Based in Krefeld, Germany, Salesation Consulting GmbH delivers holistic sales strategies and solutions to clients with the aim of helping them digitise and scale their companies. The firm was founded by Shonela Grabowski, who has recently won Most Influential Management Consulting CEO in this year’s Most Influential CEO Awards.
Welcome to the August 2023 issue of CEO Monthly. As always, CEO Monthly is dedicated to providing the latest news and features across the business world to our readership. By sharing knowledge, insights, expertise, and success stories from around the globe, we aim to inspire individuals and promote positivity in a world that is in a constant state of evolution. Eight months into 2023 and the role of CEO remains as busy and as challenging as ever, with there being an ever-increasing need to stay competitive. We take the time to celebrate those visionary leaders for whom that is not an option, who are agile and flexible, and who are devoted to doing whatever it takes to ensure their companies and industries keep flourishing. An example of such a CEO is our front cover feature, Shonela Grabowski from Salesation Consulting GmbH. We get to know Shonela and how she and her team of experts help clients build a strong sales force in order to scale and succeed. As an outstanding CEO, Shonela has driven Salesation to incredible heights with her belief in never standing still or staying in one’s comfort zone. I hope you find each of the stories in this issue to be inspiring and wish you a prosperous month ahead. Rebecca Scotland, Editor Website: www.ceo-review.com AI Global Media, Ltd. (AI) takes reasonable measures to ensure the quality of the information on this web site. However, AI will not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, correctness or completeness of any information that is available through this web site. If errors are brought to our attention, we will try to correct them. The information available through the website and our partner publications is for your general information and use and is not intended to address any particular finance or investment requirements. In particular, the information does not constitute any form of advice or recommendation by us or any of our partner publications and is not intended to be relied upon by users in making or refraining from making any investment or financial decisions. Appropriate independent advice should be obtained before making any such decision. Any arrangement made between you and any third party named in the site is at your sole risk and responsibility.
4. News 6. Salesation Consulting GmbH: We Redefine Sales 8. Ignite Purpose: Most Influential CEO 2023 – New South Wales (Performance Improvement Consulting) 9. Green Eco Technologies: Think Cost, Think Circular, Re-Think Food Waste 10. DataTick Ltd: Europe’s Most Influential Data Leader 11. Realise: Events Services You Can Count On 12. GRUPO DVOS Developments S.L.U: Find Your Dream Home in the Costa del Sol 14. CEOs are Leading with Culture to Boost Employee Engagement and Bottom Line Contents
NEWS First AI as CEO in Europe Revolutionizes Leadership using Human Supervision for Safety
Rudolph de Bruin, Chairman of the Board of Canada Fluorspar, is delighted to announce that Mr. Eben Visser has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Canada Fluorspar, effective immediately. Mr. Visser is a highly experienced mining executive having spent his earlier career with several worldclass mining and mining-contiguous organizations, including the DRA group of companies, where he supported, and project managed several important global mining initiatives. Most recently, Mr. Visser held senior positions with Treasury Metals Inc., Toronto, and Vital Metals Limited, Toronto. Mr. Visser has led EPC and EPCM project teams responsible for the construction of metallurgical and logistical facilities in Africa, India, Canada, USA, and South America. Mr. Visser is an experienced mechanical engineer with global metallurgical plant construction and commissioning experience. He is a permanent resident of Canada and holds a B.Eng. (Mechanical Engineering) from the University of Pretoria (South Africa). He also holds a post-graduate diploma in Advanced Project Management (APM) and is a registered Project Management Professional (PMP) with the Project Management Institute. In welcoming Mr. Visser to Canada Fluorspar, Mr. de Bruin said: “Canada Fluorspar operates on a worldclass ore body. The objective of AMED Capital, the holding company of Canada Fluorspar, is to deliver against its undertakings to the Government of Canada, the Province of Newfoundland, the employees of Canada Fluorspar as well as the communities surrounding the mine through world class technical leadership. The appointment of Mr Visser as CEO of Canada Fluorspar is an important step towards the achievement of that objective. We are therefore very pleased that Eben decided to join us on our journey to become a world-class player in the global fluorspar market.” “I am excited to be joining Canada Fluorspar at such an early stage of its growth”, said Eben Visser. “I look forward to leveraging my background in project development and operations to build a world class team and help it achieve its full potential”. Appointment of Eben Visser as CEO of Canada Fluorspar Hunna Technology, a UKheadquartered HealthTech startup, today unveiled the firstever AI in Europe to act as the CEO of a company. Using a combination of AI and human intelligence, the hybrid system goes beyond just a chatbot, and is based on a new simple mathematical algorithm. IndigoVX, developed by Hunna Technology, facilitates an efficient collaboration between artificial intelligence and human expertise. Imagine a chess game where a person sets the high-level goal, and the AI generates the optimal moves, with both parties continually refining the strategy together. The inspiration for a supervised AI as CEO came from Steve Jobs, who famously said: “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do. We hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” AI as CEO Hunna has been testing the IndigoVX AI system for 12 months to ensure safety and legal compliance before announcing its promotion to CEO. “I stepped down as CEO in July because I believe an AI supervised by humans can outperform me.”, said co-founder Ahmed Lazem, “She hasn’t failed us.” “The IndigoVX AI system has consistently surpassed our expectations - it’s blown our minds.” says Dr. Kais Dukes, CTO and co-founder of Hunna Technology. “The AI CEO has successfully identified under-explored markets, optimized resource allocation, and accurately forecasted consumer trends, with an over 90% successful decision rate.” Successes of the AI to date include: - defining a strong and realistic business strategy that the founders were able to execute - identifying the startup idea in the first place - providing key research for talks to roll out their medical AI nationally in the UAE - selecting the UAE as an initial target market - working with the AI every day for all business processes Hunna’s mission is to harness the power of AI while ensuring safety and accountability through constant human supervision. Our AI CEO isn’t fully automated, but we see that as a strength, not a weakness. For this reason, we feel it’s justified to give the system a CEO title, as ultimately it’s the algorithm calling the shots, even though the algorithm has a human component. Calling IndigoVX a CEO isn’t just giving the system a title, it’s about partially automating the role of a Chief Executive Officer, to guide the overall operations of the company.
Shonela Grabowski: We Redefine Sales
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 7 Jul23542 Based in Krefeld, Germany, Salesation Consulting GmbH delivers holistic sales strategies and solutions to clients with the aim of helping them digitise and scale their companies. The firm was founded by Shonela Grabowski, who has recently won Most Influential Management Consulting CEO in this year’s Most Influential CEO Awards. Salesation is an international company that has two pillars, the first being its agency component and the second being its pure consultancy element. Its overall mission is to introduce scalable processes into businesses, helping clients across multiple locations to become number one in their industry in terms of digital sales and marketing. Many companies lose a significant amount of money every year simply because their sales department is not equipped with the structure, skills, and tools they need to reach their full potential. Salesation & Partner provides clients with its modernised knowledge of sales structures and scaling, enabling them to set their business up to succeed in the years to come. It delivers online or onsite consulting services to help with things like templates and scripts, performance measurement through regular technical sales structure, strategic sales development, and sales execution as required. It can be seen as an experienced and knowledgeable external CSO (Chief Sales Officer) who will successfully lead their sales team into the future. One of the many factors that make Salesation unique is the incredibly fast and efficient way in which its solutions produce results. The firm exclusively supports one to one consulting to enhance the benefits of its services. For example, it offers a “sales bootcamp” that involves two to three days of intense training. This programme is equivalent to six months of consulting with any other firm. Because of this, the company is creating a new market for effective, short-term consulting solutions in sales. Salesation’s team of experts help clients build a sales force that not only succeeds but also exceeds their expectations. Its primary focus is to set goals with clients to determine how they imagine their sales team and what they expect to achieve. The firm then works closely with them to advise them and encourage them to aim high. Working with PLCs (Public Limited Companies), Franchises and companies with multiple branch offices in a multitude of industries, Salesation understands that every company has its own goals and needs. For this reason, it offers tailormade solutions that encompass the entire spectrum of sales development. Whether a client needs the whole package or just a part of it, Salesation is well-equipped to help. Specialising in the field of scalable solutions, Salesation builds on individual concepts that can be applied in every subsidiary. The company is dedicated to moving away from the common market strategies for acquisition, building, and expansion that have been overused in the last decades. They combine new- and old school strategies. To Salesation, marketing is not just a means to an end. Instead, it is a useful tool that can be leveraged to turn dreams into reality. By helping clients to implement their innovative ideas, the company enables them to bring their visions to life whilst incorporating their own personal touch. In this, Salesation is changing the way people think about sales. Shonela Grabowski founded the company in January 2022 with this goal in mind. Since then, Salesation has become the fastest growing international consulting company with a focus on sales. To drive her business to these heights, Shonela has led with extreme ownership, which refers to the idea that leaders must own everything in their world. This means that she takes on responsibility for her team’s failures and setbacks as well as anything else that even remotely affects the company’s achievement of its missions. She then makes it her priority to put things right and ensure that the problem doesn’t occur again. “I have noticed that leaders tend to blame everyone and every circumstance around them, except themselves and their own actions. That’s a battle that needs to be understood and fought every day,” Shonela explains. One’s own ego has to be in check and held back to be able to flourish and grow. Every day I reflect on what I can do to improve and get better because I am responsible for each and every action. “ “ Shonela instils this philosophy in Salesation’s internal culture to ensure that everyone takes responsibility for their actions. She also puts a strong emphasis on customer service, encouraging her staff to put the client and their business above anything else. In hiring, Shonela aims to recruit top talent who will utilise their skills to enable Salesation to reach its goals and missions but also their own goals. She comments, “We only go for A-players who are better in their fields than I am. This way we only attract high performers. All staff complement each other in their areas and strengths.” Operating in the ever-evolving industry of sales, Shonela understands that Salesation can never stand still and settle into its comfort zone. She is constantly innovating to improve the solutions she provides to her customers. In the future, she is building an international branch office, expanding into several new countries, and implementing this sales mentality all over the world. In addition, later this year, Salesation is planning to host a winter sales bootcamp that will take place in an exclusive chalet in the French Alps. The company plans to offer businesses the chance to attend for free through its social media, enabling startups and young founders to access support with their sales development. Shonela adds, “All our founders started young, so it is a matter of the heart for us to support young founders who may not yet have the financial means. We are also planning a fundraising run for Young Founders in 2024.” As a result of her dedication to her clients and the work Salesation does, Shonela has been awarded Most Influential Management Consulting CEO in this year’s Most Influential CEO Awards. We congratulate her on this commendable achievement and wish her the best of luck in the coming years as she works to build Salesation into an international powerhouse. Contact: Shonela Grabowski Company: Salesation Consulting GmbH Web: www.salesationundpartner.com
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 8 hristina Foxwell decided there must be a better way to get people engaged with their work, and discover their passion for what they do every day. As a senior leader, she recognised the vital importance of delivering effective outcomes through people, and has made it her mission to understand how to align people and performance for better outcomes together. As the CEO for Ignite Purpose, she handpicked a team that can work as a successful interconnected group of people focused on helping to support clients across the world. Ignite Purpose is championing a way of disrupting traditional cultural transformation through its game changing approach to building results through innovation and learning. It feels that shifting mindsets can help to save lives, and create performance definitions with people at the centre. To do this, Ignite is creating a better world, where love is recognised as a bringer of connections within the workplace. It wants love to trump fear in the workplace, promoting psychologically safe places to exist with built-in better mental health practices. Ignite values building a culture of hive performance, which it sees as a key way of encouraging open communication with clients. It is as much committed to developing its own people as it is to influencing others. It knows this is what allows compassion to emerge and create strong communities that get better together. In order to do this credibly, it has a set of 5 aspirational maxims it employs. The first of theses is to be brave. It wants to remind people to show up, do the best they can, work on themselves, own their fears, take chances, and remember that today matters. The second motto is to be a learner. This is to encourage people to remember they don’t fail, they just learn. It wants people to be willing to try and test new things, give and receive honest but kind feedback, and learn to embrace a ‘not yet’ mentality. The third thing to always bear in mind is to be kind. It wants its people to embrace kindness, working on loving themselves first, controlling their inner judge and resisting the blaming/shaming Most Influential CEO 2023 – New South Wales (Performance Improvement Consulting) Ignite Purpose is a human centred performance improvement coaching, training, and consulting practice. Its CEO and founder Christina Foxwell created the company in 2012 as a way to help people find purpose and passion in the work they do. It seeks to equip leaders and teams to turn challenges into opportunities for growth. of others. It encourages its people to show kindness without expecting return. Fourthly, Ignite Purpose instils a value in its people to be accountable. It asks them to do what they say they will, deliver on agreed outcomes, take ownership of their learning and embrace growth. It guides them to remain open to new perspectives, and keep to deadlines. Finally, the value it wants its people to take on board is to be together. It wants them to connect with each other, use their strengths when embracing partnerships, find ways to connect, respect, and engage each other, and always remember it’s everyone’s responsibility to be better together. These values are what makes Ignite successful at working with medium sized organisations to support them in leveraging their own people to be better together. It works with CEOs and executive leaders who want to solve challenges with people in a unique and innovative way. As a boutique consulting firm, Ignite actually lives its philosophy. It doesn’t just educate, it supports full on transformation of people and business culture, in a way that spans beyond the workplace. It’s an industry gamechanger in its approach to engage every single team member, and encourage them to become better together. And with Ignite, of course, it’s not just talk; they can be observed actually living their values. As CEO, Christina’s leadership style has also adjusted to adopt the company values. She was a much more dominant leader in the beginning, but she recognised that the style was not getting the best out of her. Shifting her own mindset has allowed her to release the fears she had about work, and unlocked a much more agile methodology. She no longer holds on to difficulties, and has learnt to be open, peaceful, and more grounded as an executive leader. Qualities that have seen her win Most Influential CEO 2023 – New South Wales (Performance Improvement Consulting). Well done Christina, you and your company really are making such positive advances in the business world. Company: Ignite Purpose Web: https://www.ignitepurpose.com.au Contact Name: Christina Foxwell May23369 C
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 9 Mar22259 Think Cost, Think Circular, Re-Think Food Waste From day to day, our planet produces an abhorrent amount of food waste, simply because there isn’t a uniform method to measure, reduce or re-purpose how much we’re generating . However, Green Eco Technologies has devised a way to utilise technology to bring a solution, and it’s made possible in large part thanks to its CEO, Rick Woods. Join us as we explore how Rick’s unrelenting passion for change has earned him the title of Most Influential CEO 2023 – Australia (Waste Disposal). Green Eco Technologies, proud creator of WasteMaster, has already began its journey towards making waves within the food waste industry. Through providing world leading, on-site commercial food waste processors, called the WasteMaster, it’s reshaping the way we think about and deal with the quantity of food waste we’re producing. WasteMaster is a genius piece of technology that’s capable of transforming food waste into a valuable circular economy resource, whilst remaining accessible and relatively inexpensive. But how does it work? As detailed by Green Eco Technologies, WasteMaster radicalises the oxygen molecules in the ambient air to interact with organic recycling waste. It breaks it down at a cellular level, destroying pathogens and vaporising moisture alike, all to reduce the overall volume of the waste by up to a whopping 80%. Once this process is complete, the remaining residual is collected by Green Eco Technologies to be used for the benefit of others in the community. Its processes are both rigorous and seamless, and it wouldn’t be remotely possible without Rick’s guidance. As CEO, Rick manages the ins and outs of Green Eco Technologies, and it’s thanks to his prowess and previous experience that he’s able to upkeep the well-oiled machine that is Green Eco Technologies. By deploying his expertise in determining what separates a good team from a great team, he’s managed to establish a leadership style that fosters an unwavering sense of excellence. Rick expresses how he’s most rewarded by the teams he has a part in building, and how said teams develop into ones that are able to outperform even the toughest of competitors. By understanding both single and collective strengths, Rick is able to support each individual within the company, without once having to sacrifice integrity or honesty to do so. He has complete faith in the people around him, and avidly expresses this through his actions as CEO. Green Eco Technologies is a company that’s focused on changing the world as much as it can, but the feat is near impossible without stringent organisation and resilientleadership skills. Rick brings all of these attributes to the table, however, allowing him to deploy the correct measures to extend Green Eco Technologies’ reach throughout Australia and overseas. He recognises how much food waste contributes towards a company’s carbon footprint, and has set out to use Green Eco Technologies’ impact as a mouthpiece to educate and spread awareness of the global food waste challenge, given food waste contributes approximately 12% of global CO2 equivalewnt emissions. Green Eco Technologies truly has a special piece of technology in its arsenal, equipping it with all of the necessary means to fight back against rampant food waste issues, including 4G technology that enables monitorinbg and reporting on every Wastemaster in the fleet errespective of where it might be on the planet. Through a combination of an exceptionally built team that’s consistently being empowered by its CEO, and Rick’s incredible understanding of how to pilot a company towards change, it’s managed to make its mark on the food waste industry. There isn’t anything like Green Eco Technologies’ WasteMaster on the market , which may very well have something to do with the internal structure it has going for it. Rick Woods and his team have poured their heart and soul into the company, and it definitely shows. The feats the company has already accomplished are nothing short of astounding, and we’re certain that it’ll continue to make strides towards drastically reducing and re-purposing food waste on a global scale. We’re proud to award Rick with the title of Most Influential CEO 2023 – Australia (Waste Disposal). His prowess continues to lead Green Eco Technologies down the path towards greatness, and we simply can’t wait to see where said path leads. Contact: Rick Woods Company: Green Eco Technologies Web: www.greenecotec.com Jun23393
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 10 perating across industries, DataTick advises Boards, Senior Executives, and Data Leaders about how their organisations can reach their full potential through data and analytics. The firm works to maximise the value of its clients’ data to ultimately increase their profits, revenues, operational efficiency, and customer and employee satisfaction, all whilst reducing costs and risks. Through this, DataTick enables companies to gain and maintain a competitive edge, systematically outperforming their competitors. Simon has spent over 30 years working in the field of data and has led some of the most significant transformations in Europe. During his time working for a global consultancy, he developed the business case for a UK bank to generate £1bn of incremental revenue per annum by leveraging data. Simon comments, “It was (and I believe still is) the biggest business case made for data in Europe by a non-tech firm.” Throughout his career, Simon realised that large-scale consultancy felt somewhat hollow, with big consulting firms taking over clients’ capabilities and dominating their space, all while charging extremely high rates. Inspired to do things differently, Simon created DataTick to provide an alternative to this model. The firm coaches and educates existing teams, challenging them intellectually and building their confidence to enable them to develop their own resources. Through this, DataTick empowers its clients to succeed independently. It prides itself on its integrity and aims to set the standard for ethical data consulting. Competing against a multitude of well-established big-name companies, DataTick has achieved success by offering a truly unique service. It transforms clients’ capabilities, fitting in seamlessly with their culture and enabling them to deliver. DataTick consistently brings in repeat work through its high-quality services, driving it to surpass big consulting firms. Since its establishment in 2016, DataTick has grown at a faster rate than expected. Simon is committed to supporting the company’s development Europe’s Most Influential Data Leader DataTick Ltd. is a specialist, highperforming data and analytics advisory firm that works to transform organisations across the world by providing them with unparalleled expertise and seasoned strategic insights. The company is led by Founder and CEO Simon AsplenTaylor, one of Europe’s most experienced and successful data leaders, who has been named Most Influential Data Analytics CEO in the Most Influential CEO Awards 2023. Here, we speak to him to find out more about his business. by recruiting the right people and supporting them to succeed. The firm’s employees contribute to the evolution of the business by bringing their ideas and expertise to the table. Simon strives to facilitate this by encouraging collaboration and contribution. Having spent the majority of his career in data, Simon aims to be the kind of leader and coach that he would have wanted himself. He shares, “For me, a fundamental part of being a founder is making sure that when things go well, everyone reaps the material rewards. Our formative team members, from graduates to C-suite, are offered a share in DataTick.” Simon is also committed to addressing the prevalent recruitment issues in the field of data, where men outnumber women 4 to 1. Due to longstanding exclusion from opportunity, female data specialists sometimes appear to be less experienced on paper than their male counterparts. In its recruitment strategy, DataTick therefore operates based on the belief that CVs aren’t always the best indicator of ability. Instead, the firm focuses on hiring individuals who demonstrate the ability to help it deliver its business plans. Thanks to its commitment to equality, DataTick has been able to mentor numerous female UK data specialists, with the goal of maximising their confidence and encouraging them to pursue the senior positions they deserve. As a result of his outstanding leadership, Simon Asplen-Taylor has been awarded Most Influential Data Analytics CEO in the Most Influential CEO Awards 2023. In the next 12 months, DataTick plans to soon offer its consulting services as a SaaS solution, making data capabilities affordable to all. This concept is new to the market and is expected to launch fully in early 2024. “We’re levelling the playing field for government and public sector organisations (such as the NHS), notfor-profits, SMEs, and start-ups,” Simon comments. “It would benefit the economy if all firms, irrespective of size or profitability, had equal access to data capabilities.” To this end, Simon has also written a book titled ‘Data and Analytics Strategy for Business’ with the aim of making knowledge about data accessible for the price of a paperback. Impressively, the book became a number one Amazon bestseller, with many people purchasing it and using it to guide their data capabilities. Contact: Simon Asplen-Taylor Company: DataTick Ltd. Web Address: datatick.co.uk Jun23622 O
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 11 Events Services You Can Count On David Preston is CEO and cofounder of Realise, a niche partner in the events industry. Business quadrupled during the pandemic – at a time when the events industry struggled to stay alive. Come spend a few minutes with our “Most Influential CEO 2023 – UK (Event Registration & Intelligence)” award recipient as he shares what made their growth possible. 1. Be clear about your “Why?” 2. Truly be a partner, not just a provider 3. Invest in developing future leaders while evolving your services and your industry David, along with co-founder and COO Richard John, started Realise in 2017. They began as an event-specific training organisation. First, helping to design and then deliver the Events Assistant apprenticeship programme across the UK, and delivering event management training for the Chartered Institute of Marketing. From there, Realise expanded into event services – specifically registration services for clients’ virtual, hybrid, and in-person events. That further evolved to helping their clients use attendee data for audience intelligence, building on David’s 25+ years’ experience in this area. David is very clear about their “Why?” and uses it to make decisions that guide their growth plans. “We are events people, and we love the events industry. The energy, the partnerships, the very fluid nature of creating an environment for people to come together around a topic or need. So, our services – online & on-site event registration, training, and the people who successfully deliver those services – are all about delivering more than expected because we care about helping each client’s event be its best.” Integral to their success as a services business are the values David has nurtured. All team members are treated like family. Regardless of the contractual relationship – full-time, part-time, freelance – everyone, including David, is paid the same hourly rate. Collaboration and relationships are the essential building blocks of David’s easy-going leadership style. Everyone is encouraged to make on-the-spot decisions that are best for the client; suggest new ways of doing things; and, especially, to enjoy what they do and keep a healthy sense of humor. Ask anyone in David’s extensive network and they will tell you he loves staying connected and being a connector. Have coffee with him and share your latest headache and he’s likely to suggest one or two solutions or contacts – whether related to a Realise solution or someone else’s area of expertise. Client-centric. Platform agnostic. By putting people at the center – whether that’s a client, a team member, or long-time friend and colleague – David’s platform-agnostic business strategy is a natural outcome. Realise offers a menu of solutions. Where Realise develops a service offering, it is available as a standalone solution. But the end goal is always to provide what is best for the client. That means their offering can include using the clients’ own products and services or going to the market and sourcing the best solution. Realise’s clients are primarily event technology companies who, in turn, build and run corporate conferences and events for their clients. David and Richard help them rethink their ‘registration’ process and operation to make it effective, stress-free and welcoming for the event attendees. The team understands technology and are experts in the registration systems they support. What sets Realise apart, though, is they are event managers first and, therefore, speak the language of their clients. “We work with an amazing group of freelance event producers who are more than a ‘hired hand.’ The Realise team becomes an extension of the client.” An absolute focus on partnership, and not just being a provider, generates loyal, repeat clients who find value in getting more than someone who can unpack equipment and print badges. “We help exhibition companies and in-house event teams gain more by turning attendee data into actionable information. We also work with event sales teams to create effective strategies for more profitable onsite rebooking levels.” Like many industries, skills shortages are the biggest issue a services business face. The training side of David’s business is there to support that from an industry-wide point of view. Second to that is the cyclical nature of the event industry. There are incredibly busy times and then troughs. To keep the team motivated and stay current, or a step ahead, Realise is one of the few agencies to pay their freelancers to get trained on their clients’ products and services. David’s passion for the events industry means investing in developing the future leaders. So, in addition to their core business of registration-related services, Realise offers the leading event apprenticeship programme, workshops and personal skills training. David is a coach, mentor and serves on the board of Elevate – a unique, free, mentoring programme and community created specifically for the events industry. During the pandemic, to encourage innovation, David and Richard created a challenge and then invested in the creators of winning ideas to benefit the industry. And they incubate and invest in new event concepts – finding niche opportunities to bring together organizers, providers, and communities. What’s next? Expansion into the USA marketplace. Realise already has some team members in the USA. Why? Because many of their clients are global and, again, it helps Realise do what’s best for their clients. With regards to his own career, David plans to continue to learn new skills and nurture the future leaders of both the industry and Realise as a company. “I want to ensure that the legacy of Realise continues.” Company: Realise Jun23296
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 12 Find Your Dream Home in the Costa del Sol GRUPO DVOS Developments S.L.U is the most comprehensive provider of homes in the Costa del Sol, whether clients want to buy, sell, rent, build or invest. As recently announced winner of Most Influential CEO 2023 – Costa Del Sol (Real Estate), we thought it might be a good time to catch up and find out a little more. oen De Vos is the founder, owner, and CEO of Grupo Dvos, a fully integrated service company that offers the most competitive property solutions in Costa del Sol. He sees his main functions as being to set a vision and implement the strategic direction of the company. As it deals primarily with exclusive properties, including refurbishment, real estate, and property management solutions, Koen’s primary task involves defining the long-term objectives for the company, and planning how it will achieve its goals. His area of expertise is strategic decision making and project management. This involves supervising and coordinating the development of real estate projects, and ensuring that deadlines and budgets are met. Koen explains that in essence, Grupo Dvos is far more than just a real estate development company, it is a creator of spaces where dreams come to life. Consequently, its values and goals align to create a brighter and more sustainable future, one exceptional development at a time. He elaborates that in fact Grupo Dvos owes its overall success to the harmonious positioning of its values, goals, and actions. As it continues to push boundaries and strive for excellence, it is driven by a passion to create extraordinary and inspiring spaces that uplift people, and stand the test of time. As a company, Koen feels that the team at Grupo Dvos embrace challenges together, guided by its vision to shape a better future for generations to come. In terms of his leadership style, Koen feels as though it is something that is built up over time, with no particular key influences guiding him, just a keen sense of learning from experience, and solving mistakes. He is eager to learn from all opportunities presented, whether that be from his own team members, clients, or business partners. He feels that an ability to understand the context of information is important, as is giving yourself time, and being able to reinvent yourself. Grupo Dvos has 4 distinct and important business units within its arsenal. These are exclusive properties, refurbishment, real estate, and property management. It also needs to be able to operate successfully in conjunction with its different types of clients, and foster collaborative cooperations with other real estate agencies. It is well aware that on the Costa del Sol there is a lot of competition to contend with, but it is safe in the knowledge that it can offer something different, and help its clients in the most optimal of ways by providing a 360-degree service. It likes to think that by doing this, supporting its clients in every area possible, it supplies the magic ingredient that helps to make clients’ dreams Jun23689 K come true. The human touch, and the personalised attention is an integral part of the Grupo Dvos service, and builds a trust with clients that puts it a step above its competitors in the Costa del Sol or Marbella. The people at Grupo Dvos are an essential part of the company’s success, and play a fundamental role in the business. They are the driving force and the beating heart of the company, and bring their talent, experience and passion to bear at every stage of the real estate projects, development constructions, or refurbishment services. The close-knit team at Grupo Dvos Prime locations, highest possible construction quality and outstanding architecture are requirements for our developments and carefully selected exclusive listings. “ “ At Grupo Dvos, we are proud to offer you a selection of the most exclusive properties for sale and rent in Marbella and La Costa del Sol. They are carefully chosen to meet the highest standards of quality, design and location. When you choose one of our exclusive properties, you are not only buying or renting a home, but also a lifestyle. “ “
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 13 will carefully listen to clients’ needs, and strive not only to meet them but to exceed their expectations every time. Its intention is to ensure that each real estate development is a reflection of the client’s dreams and aspirations. The internal culture at Grupo Dvos is something that can be summed up as dynamic, collaborative, and driven by innovation. At the core of its culture is the company’s values, which guide every aspect of its operations and interactions. It fosters an environment that encourages open communication, mutual respect, and a shared commitment to excellence. The key aspects for this are collaboration and innovation, but in addition, continuous learning and development is also an integral factor. The company is aware it operates within a very competitive market, but it has the ambition to expand its services further still, as it looks to attract international customers. As Costa del Sol is a very multicultural and international area of Spain, the company’s main objective has become to attract clients from all over the world. It is satisfied such clients will be able to find superb investment opportunities, and that with the help of Grupo Dvos, they’ll be in safe and reliable hands to do so. Furthermore, Grupo Dvos is committed to leading the industry in sustainable construction, and promoting eco-friendly and conscious lifestyle designs for its clients. It embraces solar technology, and optimises the materials it uses, always aspiring to build greener, more resilient communities. This contributes to the well-being of both its clients, and the environment at large. Award winning Koen ascribes his success in business to the care he takes, and the effort he puts in. He feels as though when it comes to business, you always have to be attentive to the needs of the market and to your customers. The trust of clients is fundamental for any company to succeed, and keep growing, and it certainly seems to be working for Grupo Dvos. This captivating company is standing ready to help its clients’ achieve their Spanish property dreams with a dedication and passion for the industry that is palpable. Company: GRUPO DVOS Developments S.L.U Web: www.grupodvos.com Contact Name: Koen De Vos
CEO MONTHLY / ISSUE 8 2023 14 CEOs are Leading with Culture to Boost Employee Engagement and Bottom Line • Almost three quarters (71%) of CEOs highlighted culture as a top factor positively influencing financial performance—up from 26% in 2021 • More than half (59%) say it’s either very important or crucial to link culture directly to strategy to see financial benefits • More than half (53%) reported their focus on culture significantly improved employee retention regardless of working model—be it remote, in-office or hybrid Against the backdrop of a hybrid work model and an uncertain economy, organizational culture is more important than ever to boost employee engagement and retention, company performance, and financial results. That’s according to data from a new survey of 500 global CEOs published by Heidrick & Struggles (Nasdaq: HSII), a premier provider of global leadership advisory and on-demand talent solutions. “Aligning culture with the bottom line: Putting people first” found that CEOs are increasingly focusing on culture, proactively engaging employees’ mindsets, and ways of working as a path to specific business outcomes to drive financial performance—and that they are overwhelmingly seeing positive results. “An intentional focus on Company culture cannot be separate from business strategy, the two need to be inextricably linked, and when aligned can lead to significant financial returns,” said Rose Gailey, Co-leader, Culture & Organization Practice at Heidrick & Struggles. “CEOs looking to accelerate performance in today’s volatile market can do so by ensuring culture remains at the top of their strategic agenda. The data is clear: investing in your people is an investment worthwhile, creating a more dynamic organization better positioned to thrive in a rapidly evolving business environment.” Surveying 500 CEOs globally, the findings from Heidrick & Struggles revealed that leaders are integrating culture into evolving working models to boost employee experience and innovation, and that their actions are driving financial performance. A focus on company culture is paying dividends Of the results, most notably, CEOs are seeing their strategic focus on culture driving financial performance. So, how are leaders building a culture that positively impacts the bottom line? CEOs say the most important cultural element is direction and purpose, which saw the largest growth from 37% in 2021 to 69% in 2023. Other cultural elements crucial to boosting performance include agility, innovation, and growth mindset (57%) and a positive spirit and vitality (46%). CEOs today are coming to terms with the fact that culture has a tangible impact on company performance, specifically financials—culture is clearly more than a buzzword. The survey found that 71% of CEOs highlighted culture as a top factor positively influencing financial performance—up 44 percentage points from 2021. What’s more, 1 in 3 CEOs ranked culture as the primary factor overall. A large majority of respondents doubling down in this area are seeing the results: 49% of CEOs said focusing on company culture significantly improved financial performance, with an additional 35% saying it somewhat improved financial performance. Employee retention: the peoplecentric approach is working Culture is not only driving financial outcomes but improving the employee experience overall. In fact, CEOs view the financial benefits as an added bonus, instead driving their culture efforts with an eye toward employee satisfaction and performance. The leading motivator for CEOs focusing on company culture was increasing employee engagement, more than doubling the number of responses since 2021 from 26% to 54%. The top three reasons for focusing on culture were rounded out by increasing innovation and improving diversity and inclusion. These drivers highlight a growing emphasis on employees and the way they work together— demonstrating that CEOs are taking a peoplecentered approach. The survey found that this approach is already proving beneficial. Culture was the top influencing factor on employee retention rates—surpassing even compensation and benefits and workplace flexibility. Almost every respondent said that a focus on culture was improving employee retention, with 53% saying it significantly improved retention and 41% saying it somewhat improved retention across working models. While workplace norms ebb and flow over time, company culture is a mainstay for CEOs regardless of what’s happening externally.
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