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Chris Bartlett

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Name: Chris Bartlett

Age: 49

Company: GCS Recruitment Specialists

Turnover: £27m

First job: Trainee computer operator with ICL in 1979.

Dream job: Filling John Peel’s legendary boots.

Car: Land Rover Discovery.

Economy, business or first class: Premium economy. As far as I’m concerned, my holiday starts as soon as I get on the plane. However, with five children, premium economy makes a little more economic sense than first class.

Most extravagant purchase: The third house I bought was somewhat out of my reach at that point – it was tough to make the mortgage payments sometimes but it was a risk that paid off. I’m not naturally an extravagant person, so within my home, the most extravagant thing is likely my disco equipment. 

Most played song on iPod: It’s a three-way tie between “Surf’s Up” by the Beach Boys, “Love Will Tear Us Apart” by Joy Division and “Do the Strand” by Roxy Music.

Best business book: Chasing Daylight by Eugene O’Kelly. It’s not strictly a business book but it is incredibly inspirational and there is plenty in there that can be related to business.

Worst business moment: The dark days of 1995 – my business partner and I hadn’t seen much by way of wages in quite some time in order to keep the company afloat. The worst point was when we didn’t have enough money to pay our contractors. Having to go into the office that day was the low point but, through calling the contractors and explaining, honestly and transparently, the situation, we were able to resolve things and make it through without anyone losing out. 

Proudest business moment: Genuinely, there are too many to mention but they all include people excelling in their work at GCS. I am a believer that employees are volunteers, not conscripts so to see them succeed is a great cause for pride. 

Business mentor: Nobody really – although a case could certainly be made for Amanda, my wife of 21 years, who has been incredibly supportive and a great sounding board.

Next big thing: It is going to be the expansion of the newer brands within the GCS family – in particular, the accountancy brand. After technology, accountancy is the biggest sector for which we recruit.

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