Vincent Nair is the CEO of SMARTECH Business Systems, a global industry-leading channel partner for a range of businesses in the communications, ecommerce, print and mailing industries.
The business spans print, visual communications, mailing solutions, and eCommerce businesses including parcel lockers, along with digital solutions, eServices, and print mail direct-to-customer solutions.
Nair has led the growth and turnaround of the business from a loss-making enterprise in 2016 to 988% earnings growth in 2022. Under his leadership, the company has had a significant compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 61% over the last six years. During this period, SMARTECH quadrupled its workforce, doubled its customer base, and delivered substantial value to its shareholders and customers.
Nair has over 26 years of experience in global senior executive roles with Fortune 500 companies. He served as managing partner of WIPRO Technologies Australia/New Zealand, divisional managing director for Lucent Technologies Australia/NZ and COO of Fuji Xerox ANZ Hub Centre.
He was also formerly the senior vice president for the Asia Pacific, Africa, and Middle East Regions at Pitney Bowes Inc
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Table of Contents
In the past year, what is the greatest business achievement you’d like to celebrate with your team? Please share the details of that success.
Vincent Nair: Since the acquisition of the Quadient Oceania operating company in January 2021, SMARTECH Business Systems has posted profits two years in a row.
A profitable company in a turbulent economic environment is a secure company which means job security for all company employees across Oceania. This also means transformation strategies are working well and providing optimum results.
Quiet quitting, The Great Resignation, are an ongoing trend causing many businesses to struggle keeping talent engaged and motivated. Most are leaving because of their boss or their company culture. 82% of people feel unheard, undervalued and misunderstood in the workplace. In your experience, what keeps employees happy? And how are adapting to the current shift we see?
Vincent Nair: In a very recent Employee Satisfaction Survey at SMARTECH, over 80 per cent of employees agreed that the company met their expectations of an employer.
Employees become happy if employers understand their reality both inside and outside of the workplace. Whilst employers are too focussed on getting things right in the workplace, they miss the pain points of employees outside of the workplace.
SMARTECH is one of the first employers to provide employees with monthly car fuel subsidies, monthly grocery vouchers, regular team lunches and a paid holiday for high performing employees and spouses.
These investments result in strong employee retention and create an engaging culture!
Online business keeps on surging higher than ever, B2B, B2C, online shopping, virtual meetings, remote work, Zoom medical consultations, what are your expectations for the year to come and how are you capitalizing on the tidal wave?
Vincent Nair: Is there a tidal wave or will there be an earthquake? Whilst the boom in ecommerce is occurring, companies should not stray too far from their core competencies without careful risk management frameworks.
The grass always seems greener on the other side but that does not mean you have to throw the toys out of the cot. In a crowded market, the transition from your core business to capitalizing on prospective growth strategies has to occur gradually.
Christopher Hitchens, an American journalist, is quoted as saying that “everyone has a book in them” Have you written a book? If so, please share with us details about it. If you haven’t, what book would you like to write and how would you like it to benefit the readers?
Vincent Nair: I have not written any book, but the book I would like to write would be called “How the underprivileged can build a multi-million dollar global business”.
I come from a family of ten children with my father as the only breadwinner. I am a descendent of the south seas indentured bonded labour slavery system of the 19th century. I was born in a disadvantaged part of the Fiji Islands where there is no regard to law and order.
The main message in the book would be how not to give up despite the headwinds of humanity, and how you can go on to build a successful multi-million dollar global business!
2020, 2021, 2022 threw a lot of curve balls into businesses on a global scale. Based on the experience gleaned in the past years, how can businesses thrive in 2023? What lessons have you learned and what advice would you share?
Vincent Nair: Different skills are necessary today to get the best out of employees. For example, there is no tolerance for empty rhetoric from employers, dreamy “pie-in-the-sky” vision, or mission statements such as “we want to be the best of class” or “we want to revolutionise the industry”.
Whilst persuasive communication is still the hallmark of impactful leadership, walking the walk and talking the talk in the literal sense, as well as dipping your hands into your pocket as an employer, are the triggers for employee engagement. If you have an engaged workforce, you will have an engaged customer base.
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Vincent Nair: Success to me is all about inorganic growth. Inorganic growth requires capital, and capital means low gearing or self-funding.
We aim to enter into full stack development capabilities in 2023 and we are also on the hunt for like-minded businesses looking to scale.
Jerome Knyszewski, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Vincent Nair for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Vincent Nair or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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