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Mon 19 Sep 2016 09:30 AM

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The entrepreneurial spirit of Ludovic Loffreda, CEO of LPL Group

CEO of LPL Group Ludovic Loffreda believes that successful leaders need to love their job, and go to work with passion

The entrepreneurial spirit of Ludovic Loffreda, CEO of LPL Group

CEO of LPL Group Ludovic Loffreda believes that successful leaders need to love their job, and go to work with passion

What prompted you to start LPL Group?

I have been based in the country for eight years now. I invested spontaneously when I arrived here after seeing the UAE’s ability to believe in and give confidence and optimism to its residents. Today, we have over 20 companies under the LPL Group umbrella and continue to grow our portfolio in a diverse range of market sectors.

If all goes well, how do you see the group growing over the next five years?

LPL Group has been growing and will continue to grow with investments made into innovative companies and organisations that have the will to expand in the Middle East. We have a great recipe and my team and I look forward to stretching ourselves and growing out portfolio by exploring opportunities to enter into new market sectors.

Are there any particular challenges to that goal?

The companies in our portfolio operate in a number of different market sectors, each with its own nuances and challenges. A common challenge is the economic downturn, which we view as an opportunity and will continue to invest. We need to challenge our environment every day for constant improvements in our businesses.

Where do ideas come from inside LPL Group?

I surround myself with great people. We talk daily and I encourage them to think out the box. We have a constant flow of ideas from our teams, our partners and our associates. I love seeing a new idea put on the table materialize into something concrete, it is so rewarding to all involved.

Does the company do anything to promote creative thinking?

Our offices are avant-garde, with contemplation zones, chill out areas, collaboration rooms. It's great to see teams using these areas to come up with new and creative ideas to do things better.

 

Do you have a particular decision-making process?

Some of the decisions I have to make on my own, but I prefer to use a consultative approach to decision making and empower my people to make a number of decisions on their own.

What's the best part about running LPL Group?

Meeting new people and putting partnerships together.

If you were to describe your job to an 8-year-old, what would you say?

I lead a great team of people, and we all work hard to make sure we deliver on or promises. I make decisions every day that can impact people's lives, so I think very carefully about every decision I make. And I get to meet and work with wonderful people, travel, and have fun.

Can you name a person who has had an impact on you as a leader?

My Godfather, because of his unswerving faith in my ability and ongoing sage advice.

How would you introduce a new employee to the culture of your organisation?

Our recruitment process is comprehensive, ultimately allowing the people we select to slot into their role seamlessly. We work hard at making sure we have the right people in place to do the job, and    then we let them do their job. We have a culture of working hard and having fun doing it, we celebrate our victories as a team. We have a real melting pot of cultures and personalities in our companies, and the person would fit into our culture, young or old, male or female.

What qualities do you look for in a leader?

The ability to make a decision. Right or wrong, leaders need to make decisions. Wrong decisions can be fixed, but not making a decision presents a whole lot of other challenges. Then there's honesty and integrity, I don't think you can go far without either of those.

 

What advice would you give to someone going into a leadership position for the first time?

Lead by example, and earn the trust of your employees.

Is there a mistake you find leaders make more frequently than others?

Yes, not understanding their limitations and weaknesses and getting the right people in to fill those gaps.

What's your greatest fear in business?

Losing the entrepreneurial spirit.

What's one productivity tip you wish everyone knew?

Time management is very important, there are so many hours in the day. The question is, how can you spend them productively?

If you were to give someone just starting out in business one piece of advice, what would it be?

I would make them understand that the life of an entrepreneur is a lot more demanding than taking on a simple 9 to 5 job.

 

What is the biggest luxury in your life?

Spending times with friends and family, and pursuing my racing passion via my Lucco Racing Team.

What makes you get out of bed each day?

Not what, but who. The answer is my son.

Quote to live your life by?

Don’t do to others what you don’t want other to do unto you.

What advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?

You will make mistakes. What's important is what you learn from them?

If you could give an old boss one piece of advice, what would it be?

That's a hard question, because I have never worked for anyone in my life.

If something were to happen to your business, what would be your backup plan?

Simple, I would start all over again.

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

I've always wanted to be an entrepreneur and create wealth.

How do you manage a large company and still find time for things like family?

I have a great team of people who I trust and who have the power to make decisions. That gives me the time outside of work to pursue my passions, which is racing. It also gives me ample time to spend with friends and family.

Do you have any rituals that prepare you for the day ahead?

I get out of bed, right foot first. But seriously, every day for me is different. I just look forward to meeting new people, and getting the opportunity to do good business.

If you were to step outside the office and find a lottery ticket that ends up winning a million dirhams, what would you do?

I would try and find its rightful owner, of course.

Finish this sentence, "the world would be a better place if only…."

There were more entrepreneurs