Who am I and what do I do?

I work with business owners, business leaders and leadership teams to build purpose driven businesses that achieve significant bottom line performance improvement.

I have found over my twenty years of corporate global leadership experience, in addition to starting up and running a number of technology, engineering and professional services businesses, that business performance is intrinsically linked to aligning the purpose of the business owners, employees, suppliers, and most importantly customers.

Since 2006, when I established Trysail Consulting, a business consultancy focused on building purpose driven businesses, I have personally worked with over 100 business owners, business leaders and management teams across a wide spectrum of industries to achieve significant bottom line performance improvement in their organisations. My involvement has ranged from full time permanent or interim assignments to part time advisory and consulting assignments, depending on the requirements of my clients.

In 2009 I jointly established Engineers for Africa (E4A), a skills development company that focusses on practical skills development of young engineers in the workplace.

In 2013 I jointly established The Business Solutions Initiative (BSi), a group of organisations and service providers who have collaborated to provide comprehensive purpose driven business solutions to support the growth and sustainability of businesses in the South African market.

Prior to starting Trysail Consulting I was managing director of the African subsidiary of a global IT company and grew it into one of the largest software application vendors in Southern Africa.

I have worked closely with businesses as diverse as MTN, Eskom, Mustek, OKI, British Aerospace, NASA, IBM, PWC, Deloittes, Wits Business School, GIBS, University of Pretoria, University of Johannesburg and Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship; as well as Technology and Government organisations in France, Canada, USA, UK and South Africa.

I am a professional engineer, originally graduating with a BSc in Aeronautical Engineering from Wits, followed by an MBA from Wits Business School, where I have also completed the Certificate Programme in Leadership Coaching.

I am a Founders Circle member and certified Leadership Coach, Speaker and Trainer with the John Maxwell Team, a member of Comensa, and a certified Associate of the Institute for Independent Business.

What does my ideal client look like?

I am often asked what my ideal client would be and below are some pointers that I have found result in my involvement producing significant benefits.

What does the business look like?

  • Knowledge based business or autonomous division, typically in the ICT, Engineering, Consulting or Projects field.

  • Mid-size with between R25m to R500m annual revenue and between 10 and 250 employees delivering complex solutions and has been successful but growth is slowing down.

  • Business typically started and still run by technical/academic entrepreneurs or teams and is now hitting a growth lid as market dynamics require focus to move from product and solution development to new sales and business development.

  • Organisation structure is flat with teams often operating remotely, either as separate offices or as independent project teams.

What are the typical issues they are experiencing?

  • Revenue and growth targets not being met and value of sales pipeline dropping. Often no designated sales/business development team or strategy to develop sustainable customer relationships.

  • Increasing or high staff turnover and difficulty finding the right replacements.

  • Motivation levels down.

  • Conflict/disagreements in management team or across functional/divisional boundaries resulting in silo mentality.

  • Need or desire to transfer power/responsibility from original founder/CEO to someone else.

Brief Career Highlights:

Professional Development:

2010: Certificate Programme in Leadership Coaching (Wits)

1994: Professional Engineer (ECSA)

1986: MBA (Wits)

1983: B.Sc. Mechanical Engineering, Aeronautical option (Wits)

1978: Matriculation (St. Stithians College)

As Founder and Owner of Trysail Consulting Services:

09/2006 – Present

  • Established Trysail Consulting Services in 2006, a business leadership, sales, marketing and strategy consultancy focused on building Purpose Driven Businesses.

  • Jointly established Engineers for Africa (E4A) in 2009; a skills development and training company focusing on young engineers in the workplace.

  • Jointly established the Business Solutions Initiative in 2013; a group of established organisations and service providers who have collaborated to provide comprehensive purpose-driven business solutions to support the growth and sustainability of businesses in the South African market.

  • Worked with over 100 business leaders and teams in build Purpose Driven Businesses and carried out and managed numerous consulting projects and assignments covering leadership, strategy, marketing, sales and operational optimisation in the engineering, technology and services sectors. This has included full time assignments running both engineering and technology businesses.

  • Developed the CHAMP Servant Sales Methodology to build Purpose Driven sales pipelines.

  • Developed the BSi THUNDER Methodology for building Purpose Driven Businesses.

  • A Certified Leadership Coach, Speaker and Trainer with the John Maxwell Team and a certified Associate of the Institute for Independent Business.

  • Voted the Comensa Gauteng 2014 Business Coach of the year.

  • A business Mentor with the IDC.

As Managing Director of IFS South Africa Pty Ltd:

03/2000 – 08/2006

  • Started and grew IFS South Africa (African subsidiary of Swedish Information Technology Company – IFS AB) into one of largest software application vendors in the region.

  • Fastest growing division in IFS globally.

  • Established key accounts in the telecommunications and technology sector.

  • Developed and implemented a strategic market and business strategy and developed a strategic partner network in South Africa and Africa.

  • Carried out organisation development, growth and restructuring through acquisitions, mergers and BEE partnerships.

  • Exercised full operational and financial responsibility for the business.

As Group Sales and Marketing Manager of Paradigm Systems Technology (Pty) Ltd:

11/1994 – 03/2000

  • Developed and implemented global marketing and sales strategies around software application development.

  • Developed and managed strategic partnerships with global corporations in Europe, Middle East and North America.

  • Extensive operational sales experience in South Africa, United Kingdom, France, USA and Canada.

As Sales Manager at Persetech Limited:

01/1993 – 10/1994

  • Developed and managed a countrywide divisional sales team.

Other (1984 – 1993):

  • Programme manager for the development and implementation of aircraft logistic support systems. (Paradigm Systems Technology)

  • Project manager of wind tunnel development programmes. (CSIR)

  • Responsible for the implementation of computer based industrial maintenance systems. (Unilever)