Getting To Know You: Brendan Garvey, COO, Global Procurement Group

Brendan Garvey the Chief Operating Officer of Business Champion Awards finalist the Global Procurement Group talks about the inspiration behind the business.

What do you currently do at Global Procurement Group

As COO I focus on working with our teams, supporting them to deliver to the very highest standards for our customers. Our growth has been spurred by sustained customer acquisition and customer loyalty. This is due to the quality of advice and support they receive from our people every day. I’m responsible for ensuring those standards are continuously maintained and that we go further, striving to improve on them all the time.

What was the inspiration behind your business?

Our business has grown through the desire of its founder and CEO, Fokhrul Islam, to offer customers something different to other B2B energy companies – a greater understanding of when, where and how their energy was being used, so they could reduce it and cut costs and carbon. I’ve known our CEO for much of his working life and I’m inspired by that mission – creating a greener, cleaner future for us all.

Who do you admire?

I have admiration for many people and colleagues over the years, but if someone stands out, it’s Liv Garfield, CEO of Severn Trent. We worked together at BT, and I learnt so much from her. She’s an inspirational female leader who combines a direct, honest approach, with the ability to really listen and support. She is a role model not just for women, but young, aspiring leaders in general. In what remains a male-dominated culture, she has continued to stand out through her unwavering belief in her values and through her ability to inspire others around her.

Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?

There’s plenty of times I’ve looked back over my career and asked myself why didn’t I say something then to convey my view. Although nothing major stands out, what I have learned over the years is that we must be brave and we must speak out in a respectful and constructive way about our beliefs and values.

What defines your way of doing business?

Believing in the power of people.

The success of a business really depends on its people. I started at the Global Procurement Group as Chief People Officer and my role was to get to know the people here, to support their development. I’ve worked with our people on their behaviours and supported their efforts to become better people themselves. As citizens of this planet, we can play a positive role ourselves (and by influencing others) on the environment.

I’m passionate about this because I really see it as a great opportunity to impact positively for future generations. Wasting energy really concerns me because we still don’t seem to realise its impact. Right now, businesses everywhere are burning through energy – leaving lights, monitors, heaters, generators and other equipment on.

As we see the energy crisis continue, we have the ability as people to reduce our energy by embracing technology that helps us see our impact. My way of doing business is by inspiring people to make positive change happen. There is no excuse and no time to waste.

What advice would you give to someone starting out?

Listen and ask questions – it will help you grow. Also, always seek feedback and try to use it constructively to improve yourself. You won’t get things right all the time, just as I haven’t, but you’ll be learning and developing and that is the right approach for success. Good luck!