Andrew Yeoman is the CEO of Concirrus. Andrew is a thought leader, influencer, visionary, and successful entrepreneur. Andrew provides the leadership and energy that has inspired the creation of Concirrus. Andrew Yeoman joins other leading CEOs and Founders taking part in our Leader Roundtable Interview Series. The DotCom Magazine editorial team has recently awarded Concirrus with our Impact Company of 2019 award. We are delighted to have Andrew join us for our Leader Roundtable Interview and our popular “speed round” as well.
Andrew, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day for this interview about your company, leadership, and entrepreneurship.
1. What is the “elevator pitch” for Concirrus?
We provide our customers with greater control in their decision making to help them grow their business and make it more profitable. We do this by giving them empirical measures that describe the behaviours of the insurance risk that they write which allows them to re-segment their book, identify areas of profitability and embrace innovation through the creation of new insurance products. We do this through our dynamic, data analytics platform which extracts behaviours from billions of rows of IoT data in real-time.
2. What is the key to your company’s success?
We try to combine confidence with humility. We believe that we’ve struck a good balance of curiosity, listening and imagining a better outcome for our customers. We have shown them how we can help them do a better job – the focus is always on helping them, rather than helping ourselves.
3. Many of our readers are just starting to build a company. What advice can you give entrepreneurs just starting out with a new venture?
Appreciate and accept that everything will take longer than you expect – and will probably cost twice as much. Striking a balance between ambition and pragmatism is crucial and much of that approach is around being able to manage your own expectations. Another important element is understanding when to listen and when to ignore – I’d say ignore the naysayers but always pay attention and listen to the feedback from the market.
4. For other entrepreneurs seeking to build a business as successful as yours, what advice can you give them when times get a little challenging?
To not give up and keep head strong. Not a week goes by where we see entrepreneurs starting businesses and securing funding. However, their long-term success will be hinged upon their ability to face the challenging times – building the team, establishing processes, effectively interacting with customers and creating real value in the market.
5. How important is the commitment to client satisfaction at Concirrus, and how do you make sure your customers will become raving fans of your company?
Our number one principle is all about adding value to our customers and everything we do is underpinned by this value. From the unexpected moment of delight when we send cakes to our customers on Day one, through to our implementation methodology where we work closely with our customer to understand how our partnership will add value to everyone within the organisation.
A key moment for us was realising that the insurance market was not a market at all – it’s a community. Understanding this was important for us as a business which is why we created the Power20 – our commitment to enabling the entire value chain to become more efficient.
6. In today’s fast changing business environment, how do you stay abreast of things?
I do have to manage my time quite rigorously. My train journey in the morning is around 45 minutes and I structure it so that I spend 15 minutes catching up with emails that may have come through late the night before. I then spend 15 minutes looking at my schedule for the day and then the rest of the time I’m reading articles from various sources. Industry press is certainly a regular go-to-source for me and social media also has an important role to play but it often feels like a tidal wave, so I try not to get myself too embroiled.
7. What is your “Why”? Why do you get up in the morning, and how do you keep yourself at peak performance to lead Concirrus?
My why – insurance is a 300-year-old industry. We are at the cutting edge of what’s possible and have a privileged opportunity to be able to rethink an industry and drive significant change at scale. I personally feel very honoured to be in such a position.
As a company, we follow the OKR framework which helps define and track objectives and their outcomes, but I also follow a similar approach in my personal life. I do like running with a specific goal or objective in mind – this is what helps to keep me at peak performance.
8. Can you recommend a book that has had an influence in your career? How did it influence you?
It would be a book called ‘Unlimited Wealth’ by Paul Zane Pilzer. Surprisingly, it’s not about making money – it’s all about how technology distorts supply chains and industries and how, by the introduction of a technology, you can move the economics of a given industry. I read this in the late 80’s, early 90’s and it fundamentally changed my thinking about technology.
9. When communicating with your staff, can you tell us the most important thing you do so that they are able to carry out the objectives that you set forth at Concirrus?
The most important thing for me is helping them to understand the journey we’ve been on, the journey we’re going on and why their job is important. Every single person we employ at Concirrus is responsible for the success of the company. That is why we have the OKR framework in place so that people clearly understand what is expected of them.
10. Can you explain what leadership means to you?
In my previous role at Trimble, I worked closely with both the Chief Executive, Steven Berglund and the Senior Vice President, Bryn Fosburgh – both of whom showed me what strong leadership was. To me, it’s about giving people clear objectives, inspiring a sense of self belief in individuals and then surrounding those individuals with the technology, tools, resources and ongoing support they need to be successful. One of the things I find most rewarding is seeing people progress and succeed. Leadership is a privilege.
We would like to have some fun and do a “speed round” with you! We will ask you ten more questions that we want you to answer in just one to three words only.
Here you go!
1. In three words or less, what makes a successful CEO?
A great team
2. Describe your business in one word?
3. Describe your customers in one word?
4. What one attribute do you look for when hiring an employee?
5. What is the one word you want your customers to say about your company?
6. In three words or less, describe your passion?
Make a difference
7. In three words or less, describe what it takes to be successful?
Humility, commitment and ambition
8. In three words or less, describe your first year in business at Concirrus?
Liberating, inspiring and cake
9. In three words or less, describe how running a successful company has changed you?
Less Free Time
10. What is the one word that you believe has the most power in the English language?
Andrew Yeoman, thank you so much for sitting down with us for our DotCom Magazine Leader Roundtable Interview Series. We very much appreciate the time you spent helping our readers learn more about what it takes to be a leader. We wish you, your family, and of course Concirrus, nothing but the best.