Todd McLeay, COO, APN New Zealand.
Scenario modelling for a business venture carried out prior to joining APN.
Gut feel that impending changes would have a major impact on the business.
Alter business model and investment plan in response to significant market changes predicted.
Todd McLeay had been tasked with recommending new ways for his business to take its products and services to market. It was clear that changes in technology and consumer norms would have a serious impact on the business’s investment priorities. But how those changes would play out was not obvious.
“I had some gut feelings about the way the market was going to change,” recalls McLeay. “But gut feels don’t really cut it when you’re asking the Board to make major investments – and nor should they.”
McLeay engaged Temple to evaluate the likelihood that certain changes would take place, and model their impact on the market – taking care to factor in the responses of competitors and new entrants. “The Temple consultants each have a mixture of commercial, technical and practical experience,” he comments. “They have an understanding of how things work, and they can bring that understanding to new situations.”
Working collaboratively with in-house experts was the key to success. “The Temple team are very good listeners. They understand that intuitions can be powerful, and they dig deep to find what might lie behind them,” says McLeay. “But at the same time they’re never afraid to challenge assumptions when the facts don’t back them up.”
McLeay’s experience with top-tier consulting firms is that they often come to a problem with fixed ideas about the solution. “Even though the Temple guys have that top-tier background, their level of open-mindedness is different. The team modifies its approach to each problem. They are able to see new patterns in the facts and data, rather than just looking for information that backs up what they expect to see – and that’s pretty special.”