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Senior business and charity leader Simon Johnson joined HW Fisher as part of our leadership team in early September. Simon brings a wealth of experience from both senior executive and non-executive positions including the Jewish Leadership Council and Rugby Football League. We sat down with Simon to hear his best advice for business from his extensive career.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your career so far?
I have been privileged to enjoy a fascinating career across five business sectors – law, TV, sport, leisure and the charitable third sector. I have been involved in some high profile stories, including the Who Wants to be a Millionaire “coughing scandal” and the England 2018 World Cup Bid. I have been involved in some huge deals, including buying sports rights from The UEFA Champions League, the FIFA World Cup and Formula One. I am also the Chair of the Rugby Football League, which is both a privilege and immense challenge. I am confident that this range of diverse roles will allow me to bring added value to HW Fisher.
Covid-19 has obviously been a big challenge for businesses across all industries. What is one piece of advice you would give to businesses at the moment?
Businesses are struggling with huge challenges. I believe that the businesses that will emerge the strongest will be those that stayed true to their values through the crisis. Those businesses which have treated their staff, customers, suppliers and partners with integrity, understanding and fairness will be the ones who emerge from this crisis with their reputations enhanced. Businesses who stick to their purpose will be well placed to capitalise on the new business environment.
What has been the greatest lesson you have learned as a business leader?
I have worked in high profile businesses where the decisions that I have taken have been heavily scrutinised, often publicly and critically – I’ve had to develop a “thick skin”. I have learned to always do what you believe is right and act with your own integrity. People will criticise, but if you are prepared to explain to your stakeholders the reasoning behind your decision, you will gain respect. I have also learned to try and have good relationships wherever I go. You never know when you might come across somebody in business again.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
Don’t ever think you have all the answers. The other person’s opinion is just as important to them as yours is to you.
Contact Simon for any queries or if there is any thing we can do to support you and your business by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org