Managing Partner, Data & Insights, CTO
Alex is a commercial and entrepreneurial CTO who helps ambitious and forward-thinking firms position themselves in a compelling way to their key markets. He enjoys solving business problems, leading digital projects, and motivating and working with others to deliver outstanding results.
While studying a Business and Marketing degree, I started a web design company with a friend in 2007. We had no capital and little experience, but we recognised that there were a number of small businesses that still didn’t have a website and thought we could earn more this way than through our respective bar jobs! We went from door to door picking up our first clients, and, by the time we graduated from university, we were able to run our business full time.
As we grew our business, there was a clear shift from businesses needing a website to businesses needing to optimise their website and drive traffic and sales. I started spending more time on site with clients, consulting and advising them on how best to optimise their web presence, and delivering digital projects for them. One of the things I loved the most was really getting under the skin of a business, understanding their operations and processes, what they were great at, who the key audiences were that they wanted to engage, and how we could use digital to deliver a better experience. After working for an executive search and interim management firm as a consultant for a couple of years, I joined Boyden UK with the remit of relaunching them as Savannah Group.
I head up Digital and Marketing for Savannah. That means that the customer is front of mind in everything my team and I do. My time is split between creating and implementing digital technology products that deliver advanced market insights, delivering key change programmes, developing the ongoing business and marketing strategy and overseeing marketing operations. Search and Interim businesses can be quite complex from a marketing point of view, and a good proportion of my time is spent working with the practice heads to better understand their customers and then develop products and execute strategies that engage with their audiences across a range of different functions and industries.
I believe that the best marketing adds value, pulling key audiences towards you. The senior leaders that buy our services are some of the busiest people on the planet. Their time is precious, and so to get their attention requires either extremely high-quality thought leadership that helps them achieve their personal and business goals alongside a calendar of interesting and engaging events. It sets a high bar for quality, but a relentless drive to achieve this gets the best out of both me and my team.
Anyone who knows me will say that I’m fairly competitive. I look at the transformation that many professional services businesses have gone through over the past 10 years, and how the best firms have helped enable their clients to achieve more through a truly collaborative, partnership-based approach. They’ve got close to their clients and built the products and services that they know they need. As a search and interim firm, we are privy to an incredible amount of insight into what makes a successful person and a successful business tick. We use data and insights gained from placing outstanding leaders at thousands of businesses to build unique and compelling propositions that empowers leadership teams to make better decisions about the executive talent they need. It’s my belief that we have the team and ability to be one of the best firms in this space.
Why I like working at Savannah
Everyone who works here says it’s a great place to work. A lot of that is down to the culture that is instilled within the business, and I think we’ve got the balance just right. Everyone is a peer, which allows the best ideas to flourish no matter where they come from. The team is full of bright, creative and energetic people from all walks of life. We are all motivated to succeed, and everyone knows what they are here to do.
I’m hugely impressed by the calibre and quality of my colleagues and, in some ways, I think my job is fairly simple – I just need to reflect the best bits of what we do into the marketplace. If the market could see the manner in which the partners conduct themselves and the standards they set for themselves and their teams, they really wouldn’t look anywhere else.