MSc HRM, Fellow CIPD, The Author of Team Mojo,
the art of winning and Creator of TEAMSHIFTTM
Mark was born originally in Singapore and brought up in the region of Johor Bahru, Malaysia, Mark came to Chelmsford at a very early age.
He was in part brought up by his grandparents and his grandfather, Jack Sutton, was especially influential during his formative years.
Jack Sutton was employed by Marconi in the 1940’s to build radio sets, of which some were subsequently dropped behind enemy lines to allow the French resistance to contact the U.K. He also saw voluntary service in the home guard and was involved in the development of a network of secret wireless stations that intercepted enemy transmissions during WWII. The contents of these messages were subsequently decrypted at Bletchley Park.
At an early age, Mark’s grandfather installed in him the importance of the teams at Marconi’s Chelmsford production line working towards a common goal, with a clear purpose in life. Whilst life was difficult during this period, his grandfather would often speak of a close-knit community who were loyal to each other, highly skilled and trusted one another. Accountability was exceptionally high, with errors in the construction of radio sets, costing lives.
At an early stage Mark also played competitive sports including rugby, football and cricket.
In 1988 Mark left the Royal Navy having served on the Type 42 destroyers, HMS Cardiff, Nottingham and Birmingham. Mark saw service both in the Falklands and the Gulf region and was part of the Royal Yacht Britannia escort flotilla during the Commonwealth celebrations in the 1980’s in the Caribbean.
In 1986, a short while after Live Aid, Mark sailed a yacht from Djibouti, a country in the Horn of Africa, to Malindi in Kenya. During this three week trip, Mark and his colleagues on the yacht were to experience sea pirates, a drunking captain, a vicious storm that nearly sunk the yacht, Roland the rat, sea crocodiles and a capsize! A clear purpose (survival!) team work and grace pulled the team through this life changing experience.
All these early lessons in life formed a deep connection for Mark in terms of the importance of successful communities and winning teams.
Nothing could re-affirm this more than the emergency alarm that shrilled in the operations room, during one hot tepid day in the Gulf region, when HMS Nottingham, was jumped by two Iraqi mirage aircraft.
In seconds the well drilled homogenous team on board HMS Nottingham responded, averting, what at the time, would have been a major international issue.
The lessons of great team work and establishing a winning community were now firmly in grained in Mark though his youth and military service.
Mark has personally helped to turn around a number of losing teams and speaks from the heart about what works and doesn’t work in this critical skills area, for today’s leaders and managers.
He has personally created and contributed to winning teams that have made millions of pounds profit, including a recruitment start up team in the 1990’s that made a record profit during the worst industry downturn experienced in the aerospace sectors history.
In 1990 with the start of the first Persian Gulf War the airline industry froze almost overnight, with virtually every airline across the globe grounded. In this year the industry lost more money in that period, than it had made collectively in its entire history.
Despite this Mark and his colleagues at this recruitment company, airline maintenance resources, set up a new team and established a very successful and profitable business.
Great team work, including the establishment of a very successful community where at the heart of the organisation’s success.
Mark has experienced highs and lows during his career, including having to instigate emergency response procedures during the September 11th attacks when two aircraft crashed into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre in New York City and losing one of the employees in his business unit, who was killed instantly when travelling to work on the No 30 bus, blown up in Tavistock Square, during the London bombings of July 7th 2005.
Particularly during the lows Mark has experienced incredible team work and the closeness of a strong community that pulls together during travesty.
Mark’s operational and management experience of building and developing winning teams is backed up by a variety of leadership and industry qualifications. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development, holds Masters in Hypnotherapy and Nero Linguistics Programming as well as a Masters degree in Human Resources Management.
Mark is also a member of the British Psychology Society and is a qualified coach with the Go MAD coaching process and an expert at helping teams establish their brand, vision and common purpose.
His skills include being able to help organisation’s assess the level of entropy (resistance, and systems failure) in their team(s) and subsequently developing plans to reduce entropy levels and increase the performance of the team.