An Interview with… Sam Thorneycroft

by | Nov 17, 2017 | Team News

Sam Thorneycroft, Managing Director, a1-cbissSam Thorneycroft has recently been appointed Managing Director of a1-cbiss. We’ve interviewed him to see how he feels about the promotion and to talk about a1-cbiss future plans

Sam, what does that mean to you?

When I joined a1-cbiss 8 years ago I had a very good feeling for the potential of the company. I could see that there was an opportunity to progress within a1-cbiss because of my 20 years background in environmental measurement and knowledge of the CEMS market.

The appointment came as a total shock, I was really surprised when Diploma discussed it with me. I was taken aback as I didn’t think it would be so soon. Being appointed Managing Director makes me really proud.

I first started as CEMS sales engineer, then various roles included Northern Service Manager, UK Service Manager, Commercial Director and then General Manager. So I suppose becoming Managing Director is a natural progression.

So all in all, I’m really happy. It’s the people at a1-cbiss that make it what it is.


What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve been given?

“If you can prove yourself, you will get your opportunity. Take your time to build your career. You will get your rewards”. Mark Taylor


a1-cbiss has gone from strength to strength in recent times. Why do you think that is?

Success comes from the people at a1-cbiss. It’s about teamwork, positivity, being proactive, having pride in our work, maintaining good communication, and good customer service and wanting to progress. Everyone at a1-cbiss has an important role to play to help drive our company forward.

Our knowledge as a group is improving all the time. We’re getting better at selling the complete package. Customers come to us asking for a total solution because we are the experts. It’s not just about supplying products, they will also ask us about compliance and some of the wider issues that affect them.

The engineering team are constantly developing innovative ideas. Our skilled and experienced engineers are now able to design and build systems more effectively, so we’re in a better position to deliver success.


In spring 2018, a1-cbiss will move into new premises, what does that mean?

Moving into a new facility nearly twice the size of our current premises makes a real statement of intent for a1-cbiss.

The move is driven by the 5 year business plan and the future growth we’re expecting.

We are currently over capacity and even though we have two sites within a couple of miles of each other, it is not ideal in terms of communication and transporting materials.

It was essential that the search found the right facility to keep everyone together under one roof. Because of the major disruption involved with moving, we have made sure that the premises are right for us for now and for the future. The opportunity to move into the premises just next door came about at the right time for us.

It will be sad to leave Ark Royal Way after it has been the home of a1-cbiss for nearly 20 years but we’ve outgrown it and the time is right to move.

It’s an exciting time. There’s a real buzz about the place with everyone talking about it. The offices, the storerooms, presentation areas, the workshop, everywhere will have a real professional look and feel to it. We want everyone to have pride in where we work.


What do you most enjoy about your new role?

My day to day role doesn’t change too much except having the new title. Being Managing Director will help make decisions quicker which will enable us to move as a dynamic business.


And what’s the worst thing?

Putting myself under pressure. I need to manage myself better more than anything.


Tell us about the role of a1-cbiss Managing Director

My role as Managing Director will continue to be customer facing because of the nature of the market. There is a lack of knowledge in the environmental market so that gives me more onus as an industry expert thanks to my skillset and background.

In terms of sales, we have very good salespeople who can all sell a1-cbiss products. I’ll be there to support them in terms of making commercial decisions.

I’ll continue to interact with the management team and all staff. I’ve always had an open door policy so that will continue.


The Managing Director role will be stressful at times, how do you manage this?

Healthy body = healthy mind. Everyone needs to maintain a healthy work-life balance. It’s important to do a daily physical activity. I find that I can organise and structure my time whilst out running.  It’s essential to relax at the end of the working day. I try to eat healthy when possible but sometimes I’ll need comfort food or a beer or three at the end of the day. It really depends on how I feel.


What’s your favourite pastime?

I really enjoy cycling but unfortunately, I don’t get as much opportunity as I’d like to get out on the bike. Now that I’m not playing as much, I coach rugby to kids. For the majority of the spare time I do get, it’s really about trying to balance my work life with family time.

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