Name: Tim Backshall
Job title: Managing Director
What keeps you busy all day?
Good question. I’m always very very busy, but I’m not sure I can answer this question! Mostly I worry about my team and whether they have everything they need around them to deliver excellence for our clients. Then, I worry about how we maintain our brand values through the growth we’re experiencing, I look at our business model and make sure it’s always fit for purpose… I guess that’s the designer in me – I can’t help but keep tweaking our unique approach – always developing what we do and how we work to ensure our clients get the very best service, and our people are fulfilled and happy.
What keeps you awake at night?
Nowadays, not much keeps me awake – I’ve such a great team around me at work, that the sleepless times of the past are now few and far between. Plus my three kids are older now, they don’t often wake me up!
Describe your working day:
Every day is different. Mostly I arrive at 9am after dropping my youngest son at school. I go straight to my PC and switch it on, and then wonder why, because I know I’m on top of my emails – I went through them on the Blackberry while I walked the dog at 7am! So I leave my office while the PC’s waking up and chat with some of my colleagues, check they’re OK I guess. My days are then mapped out for me in the diary – meetings with the team on client business, anything needing my input. By 2pm I think it’s probably time I grabbed a sandwich, and I try and wrap up the day by 6.30… but somehow I never really finish ’til 7 or 8, however hard I try.
What’s your busiest time of day?
I accelerate by lunchtime, trying to get on top of things, which is why I’m always late taking lunch. By mid afternoon, I’m normally on top of stuff, but haven’t eaten! I’m rubbish at routine.
What brands/accounts have you worked on?
All of them – I can’t help but get involved in everything. Some clients haven’t met me – but I’m in the back room supporting the team and advising on anything from rebrand programmes to cultural change! I love the work we do – for such a diverse range of brands from Virgin, Volkswagen, Waitrose and stagecoach to Royal Mail, Kent Police, and HM Revenue and Customs.
Best day at work:
Best days are when I’m connecting with loads of people in my team – loads of discussion about every topic- it keeps me in touch and on top of things. I love interruptions. I love a busy day; I love it when everyone’s in the office and it’s buzzin’
Worst day at work:
An empty office! Sometimes, everyone’s out with clients and suppliers – out and about – and a quiet office gets to me a bit – I miss people – especially those who I’ve worked with for years…
Name one thing you’ve achieved that has made your bosses sit up and take notice:
My boss is God. He always notices, and he’s happy with the way he made me and when I mess up, it’s OK. I try my best to pass this on to my team.
To have presence in other markets – to grow our influence over businesses by increasing our capability and establishing ourselves in other places. With offices in London and Glasgow, we’ve already started to see this happen… exciting stepping stones for the business.
Advice to other rising stars:
Treat people with respect. And care about their feelings. A lot harder than it sounds.
Quote from the boss: