Alec comes from an entrepreneurial background and started his business life at the age of six selling comics from his front garden wall. He was bitten by the profit bug which led him in his teens to having a stall in the famous Dandelion Market in Dublin. With two weeks to go before Christmas, business being slow and a lot of stock to shift, it was time for a new strategy. He organised an auction that drew a huge crowd, forced prices above their original asking price and sold out everything. The lesson he learned was to recognise a problem, adapt and change tactics quickly.
After leaving school Alec spent eight years in banking including a Dealing Room before deciding on creating his own future. Against the wishes of his elders he left the safe world of a pensionable job for life and bought a small print company. During his time here he met a graphic designer and together they set up one of Ireland’s best known design agencies in a partnership that was to last for the next 25 years. Increasing a net profit by 100x proved to be a valuable journey of knowledge involving all aspects of business. Included in this journey was membership of peer to peer learning groups, access to inspirational and successful leaders, many business books and of course learning things the hard way. Life was good but there was a storm on the horizon.
There is nothing like a recession to spoil a party and with an 80% drop in revenue over the space of a year the writing was on the wall. It was time to face reality, change strategy and manage the closure of the business in a way that minimised creditor losses and protected reputations. It was now time to lick wounds, assess options and plan for the future. A chance invitation to help a group of 60 people who had lost their businesses inspired him to look at the thirty plus years of experience he had under his belt and how best he could use that to help other CEO’s and Senior Managers shortcut the learning process.
Fast forward to the present day and Alec now shares his knowledge with CEO’s and business leaders through his keynotes, radio show, masterclasses and 1-1 consultancy. He has a unique take on business with the ability to identify small changes that will reduce costs or increase profits without having to spend money.
Some people have an academic viewpoint and share their knowledge of business based on theories. Some talk from a single industry viewpoint but Alec talks about business based on practical lessons learned over the last 40 years in four different sectors and how you can use that experience to increase profits and reduce costs
He is a great believer in the power of the simple and helps management untangle the clutter so that they can focus on the key areas that drive revenue. He shows how simple technology can make a substantial difference in reducing costs once the right culture is in the organisation.
Alec is an author, international speaker, radio show host, MC and consultant who loves the challenge of helping companies grow. His ‘keen eye for detail’ recently identified how a small change in management behaviour added 5% to the bottom line of a company within three days of meeting with them.
He is Past President of the Professional Speaking Association, Ireland, a Member of the Global Speaking Federation, a former Council Member and longest continuing member of Dublin Chamber of Commerce.
Alec’s relaxed and humorous style backed up with a wealth of true life stories delivers a unique perspective on how business can be that simple.
What others have said
As Chair of a number of Vistage groups I invited Alec Drew, The Business Expert to speak to our K237 group. He shared his knowledge in a way that gave our members a new way of addressing their most urgent challenges. His simple but intuitive insights provided a thought provoking 3 hour session that not only engaged everyone but gave them valuable tools to take back to their organisations.
His questioning and facilitating was impressive and I have suggested to our HO that he should be considered as a speaker for other groups.
Vistage Chair, Speaker, Coach, Non-Exec Director and Co-Author of the Check-In Strategy Journal
Alec Drew, The Business Expert delivered a speech called "Let’s Connect" to members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland.
Participants included business owners, practicing accountants and senior managers from business. Representatives spanned multiple industries; financial services, recruitment, leisure, construction as well as the public sector. He gave them insights into the power of networking that they had not considered before and how they could use them to increase profits and reduce costs.
Hi Alec, quick note to say thank you for your talk at the Sales Institute event today. I must admit I find networking daunting at times, but your approach to it was refreshing, simple and most importantly of all ...actionable! Definitely learned a lot which is much appreciated! All the best, Claire
Client Service Director at Opinions Market Research Agency Ireland
Alec worked with Management to review how the business could be more efficient and profitable. He promptly identified three areas that, with a few minor changes, could make a significant contribution to profits without having to spend any money.
Being an outsider allowed him to focus on the business in its most simple form and to ask searching questions often overlooked by those at the coalface.
His 'Keen Eye for Detail’ sums up his approach and offers business owners a unique insight into their own business.
Stephen M. Purcell MIPI FSCSI FRICS
Director at Future Analytics Consulting Ltd (FAC) - Town Planning and Data-Led Research Consultants
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