Alan Taylor recently joined the team as Operations Director, and brings a huge amount of expertise to the role, including extensive client-side experience in different global regions. We caught up with Alan for a quick Q&A to see how he’s settling into life at Quensh.
Quensh: You’ve joined Quensh as Operations Director — can you tell us a little about the role and what your key focuses / responsibilities are?
Alan: The main aspect of my role is to take ownership of the day-to-day operations and management of the existing business. We’re looking to further develop our client base in the Central Belt of Scotland, Southern England and Internationally, and my role will allow the wider senior management team to focus on the growth in not only these areas, but developing other strands of the business too.
My new role will also involve supporting sales and business development with our existing clients in terms of how Quensh can offer an expanded service offering. A typical week will involve strategic management of the Quensh team and resources, ensuring they’re best utilised and delivering on our clients’ expectations — that’s always going to be of paramount importance to the company. I also have plenty of opportunities to go and speak to existing clients directly, ensuring they’re happy and seeing what else we can offer, particularly in terms of our growing range of services.
Q: How would you describe your initial meetings with Quensh clients?
Alan: Really positive! I think clients understand and appreciate the value of what we offer. One area that I’m keen to stay focused on in terms of existing client support is ensuring we keep good stability and continuity of the Quensh team and the clients they work with, particularly as the company continues to grow and evolve. There’s been impressive growth at Quensh over the past 2 years and the business has been diversifying into other services, including ESG support and the acquisition of Involve HR, so it’s a very exciting time to join.
Quensh is recruiting for new talent at the moment — lots of interviews happening — and so we’ll be welcoming new faces and seeing how we can utilise new resources by expanding what we offer to existing clients, as well as bringing new ones on board. One of our key strengths as a business is the team we’ve built, and we’re always looking for good people who can help us deliver for clients and expand our capacity across our core areas of consultancy — HSEQ, ESG and HR.
Q: What attracted you to join the team at Quensh?
Alan: I think it’s clear that everyone needs some aspect of HSEQ / SHEQ / QHSE, and Quensh has such a diverse range of clients across all industries and sectors — ranging from energy companies and energy service business, right through to start-ups and SMEs in various sectors and industries. I enjoy working with this varied client base, but I also like that I have flexibility — I’m not pigeon-holed as just ‘operations’, or ‘projects’, or ‘sales’. I have the flexibility to work across sales, managing client relationships, operations management and business development, and I enjoy that variety too!
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your career to date, prior to joining Quensh? What’s your background?
Alan: I’ve had a fairly varied career so far. I actually first worked in retail after leaving school, and eventually began working in the energy sector — going offshore as a technician. From there, I moved on to client account management, project management and operational management with a variety of small to mid-sized service companies.
From there, I moved into client facing senior management roles and then for the past 6 years I’ve been based in the Middle East — in Abu Dhabi — setting up a business there and working across the region in the UAE, Iraq, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. Again, these were very much BD/client facing roles that really shaped my experience working with clients and helping develop business opportunities to support growth.
Q: What prompted the move back to Scotland after several years working overseas?
Alan: A mixture of personal and professional reasons. Our extended family is getting older and so we wanted to make sure we were getting more time to spend together year-round. Plus, we’re looking at the future for our kids, and them possibly going to university in Scotland/UK — so the timing was right to return home. The opportunity to come and work for Quensh was also a significant factor. I have known the management team for many years and so the chance to come and work with them again and help grow the business was really attractive — there’s a lot of potential!
Q: It’s been quite an exciting time of growth and development for Quensh, with the acquisition of Involve HR and the expansion of the range of services. What are some of the business’ aims and objectives for 2024?
Alan: Continued growth is a priority — it’s been a fairly steep growth trajectory in recent years and we want to see that continue. We are looking at continuing to grow our client base in London, elsewhere in the UK as well as Perth, Australia, so there are lots of opportunities to bring new clients on board from further afield.
Q: Lastly, what do you like to do when you’re not working?
Alan: I’ve always been into keeping fit — running, cycling and triathlon — and once upon a time I used to do longer distance events, but these days the local Park Run every Saturday morning is good enough for me! Apart from that, spending time with family and friends keeps me busy, and I enjoy reading and listening to music and going to gigs.