#5 Atiff Gill – Journey from Lacoste CEO to private equity management
Executive Atiff Gill is 40 years old, married with two young boys and lives in Shanghai. He has worked in the consumer and retail industry for 20 years. He started his career in the UK and relocated to Hong Kong in 1998. He first came to China in 1999 and has actually lived here for the last 8 years. Atiff is currently Managing Director of Operations in Asia for CVC Capital, one of the largest global Private Equity firms.
[on motivation] …make sure the career path of an individual is very clearly laid out. In some cases I’ve increased the layers and title structure of an organization…
How he got to China
In 1999, Atiff can with Kingfisher to help open home improvement retail stores and then moved into consulting. Metersbonwe then hired him on as Executive VP and he stayed put.
Checking emails first thing, loads of 1-on-1 meetings at work to ensure everyone is on course, a bit of family time and back to emails. Did he anticipate the intense amount of work? Tune in to find out!
What made this particular assignment appealing
Working with really smart people and interacting with other CEOs. Atiff has an interesting take on how lonely it can be ‘at the top’.
Tips for an in-country reassignment
Keep up with headhunters; network, network, network (listen to find his tips on doing so effectively); deliver strong results.
Atiff recounts the story of opening Dickies too quickly in China, which turned into a ‘painful, stressful and expensive (but valuable!) lesson.’
Turning Metersbonwe into the largest casual wear brand in China by 2007. You’ve gotta hear his amazing strategies to motivate local teams.
How’s your Mandarin?
“Awful–can we move on?” he asks. Not yet, buddy. Answer the question! Hear how he manages to lead massive organizations with taxi and restaurant-level Mandarin.
Connect with Atiff
Just like I found him! On LinkedIn, search Atiff Gill