Richard Mayers

Partner
Richard qualified (ACA) with Arthur Andersen/EY in their business advisory practice. Following several years at Goldman Sachs in leverage finance, Richard helped set up the UK leverage finance team at National Australia Bank ("NAB") before moving to co-head NAB’s UK workout team, including Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank, and then joining MML.

In conversation

What have you learnt from working with founders over the years?

That I am not an entrepreneur! Whilst that is true, the biggest lesson I have learnt is to recognise what you are good at and not to pretend to be what you are not. The best individuals I have worked with recognise where they have a skills gap and recruit great people to support them. Recognising that you need help is not a weakness, it is an absolute strength. That is why I have always tried to recruit better people than me to MML.

How do you manage your team’s work-life balance at MML?

I think we are very sensible as a business in terms of what we expect from our staff and from our management teams. Private equity can be quite demanding both for us as investors but also for the businesses that we support. We therefore understand how important it is for people to maintain a healthy work-life balance, though sometimes that is difficult. At MML we treat our people like grown-ups and actively support commitments outside of work, be that studying, sport or just catching up with friends. It is important to let off steam and to take holidays, and I continue to try to impress the importance of both to my MML team and to the management teams I work with. That being said, I am not sure I always manage to practice what I preach!

How do you describe your job to your children/friends outside the industry?

It is like Dragon’s Den but bigger and better… and we are not so scary (although I am the same height as Peter Jones!).

 

“Richard and the MML team are very smart operators, managing to be closely involved in the business without suffocating the management team. They rapidly grasp the challenges and opportunities a business might face and are very happy to roll up their sleeves and support management in delivering the agreed strategy.”
Martin Smith, Chairman, PIE

Relationships

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