Q&A with our new Head of Business Development, Chris Thalha
We sat down with our newly appointed Head of Business Development, Chris Thalha, to find out more about his career so far and his vision for EC heading into 2018.
What does your role with EC involve?
My role within EC is to head up the Business Development function, which will include all new business presentations and campaign management of new business alongside the operations department. Initially I will be tasked with sourcing a prospect database for the use of marketing and new business acquisition.
My role will then transition into a Business Development position to bring on new clients, account manage existing clients and become part of the Senior Management team.
Where did you work previous to joining EC?
For the three years previous to joining EC I was a Senior Business Development Manager at a Consumer Data Marketing Specialist selling B2C solutions in a B2B environment. The role included account management and prospecting of marketing campaigns ranging from large corporate clients through to SME’s in order to help them develop new acquisition channels, manage their outbound sales activities and recommend the most efficient methods of working data to provide the most profitable routes to market.
Before working within the data sector my background has been Financial Services based, my most notable being the Head of Contact Centre/Marketing Director at a national Mortgage and Insurance broker based in Leicester. I was instrumental in helping build the company to become the largest introducer of business to Legal & General for life insurance cases at its peak completing over £3m per month of new policies.
Within my period of Financial Services roles I have also built and managed a business of a Financial Services Marketing Contact Centre, a Mortgage Broker and also been Head of Sales for one of the largest Debt Management companies. My Financial Services experience spans back over 20 years, which has seen some turbulent times with credit crunches and new regulation.
What unique skills and experience do you bring to the company?
My core skills include Sales Management, Financial Services marketing, Contact Centre Management, Business Development and Account Management.
My strengths are my ability to converse with senior decision makers and business owners to identify opportunities that they may not have thought of themselves in regards to cost efficiencies, new channels of acquisition and providing additional revenue streams within their current sales processes. I have an analytical approach with a good in depth knowledge of business planning and forecasting, which I am sure will be evident in my role here at EC.
What’s your vision for EC heading into 2018?
My vision for 2018 at EC is to help grow with new clients from various sectors to provide the business with a broad range of agent skills in order for us to be in a position to deliver solutions to almost any business sector. My Financial Services experience will be used to develop a new and highly profitable division within EC that gives us a starting point into an industry that has growth and sustainability for a long term future.
What challenges do you anticipate coming up against and how can they be tackled?
In my opinion the biggest challenge in 2018 for EC will be to house the additional head that will be required for all the additional clients that we will be looking to bring on board!
From an industry point of view there are challenges relating to data regulation but these are already being handled with the highly professional levels that you would expect from a leading outbound contact centre. In actual fact this may play into the hands of EC as there will be many other outsourcing businesses that will not be prepared for the new regime and either be walked out of the outsourcing industry by the regulator for breaches of non-compliance or find it too difficult to adapt and make the necessary changes that will simply mean “handing up the towel” before being forced out by the regulator.
What do you think it takes to be a successful BDM in the outsourcing industry?
To be successful in the outsourcing industry today means keeping ahead of the competition, not only in terms of pricing options but also delivering the best results possible and becoming a supplier of choice by having an ability to become partners with clients and sharing in each other’s successes. Adaptability is important and being able to make changes at short notice with minimal interruption shows clients that we are confident at being able to fulfill their requests over and above their own expectations.
Having successfully ran large businesses I have a diplomatic approach to working with colleagues but having a level of seniority of experience I have usually encountered the subjects being discussed and, in most cases, been able to offer sound advice through fair reasoning and understanding the outcome.