Winning Group CEO, John Winning, has been named the 2016 Retail Executive of the Year at a gala dinner held in Sydney.
Hosted by Eddie McGuire, The CEO Magazine’s Executive of the Year Awards recognised 29 of Australia’s executives. The honours were spread across 24 categories and rewarded business leaders who had made a notable difference in the corporate world during the 2015/16 financial year.
Winning, who heads up kitchen and laundry appliance company Appliances Online, was recognised for the significant impact he has had on the retail industry through a focus on providing exceptional customer service.
It was the fourth time Winning had been recognised at the awards—he was named Retail Executive of the Year in 2013 and 2014 and Young Executive of the Year in 2012.
Speaking to Retailbiz Winning said he was honoured to win the award again. “I’m humbled…I think it’s an amazing credit to my team for the work they’ve put in over the past year,” he said.
Winning explained his company’s mission is to provide the best shopping experience in the world. This includes holding more stock than most, meaning there is a much higher likelihood a product will be in stock for next day delivery.
Appliances Online is also able to deliver to approximately 95 per cent of the Australian population with its own trucks and has warehouses across the country.
“A lot of it comes down to culture,” said Winning. “Some people think they can buy good customer service…but it’s the added extras you can’t put in writing that make all the difference.” This means “going beyond above and beyond” with 24/7 phone support and a team that cares about its customers.
“Like when a truck driver turns up at a customer’s house and treats it like his own,” said Winning. “That’s the stuff you can’t buy. As a CEO, my job is to not really do anything tangible, but to make sure I put the best leaders in place.”
The night’s top honour, CEO of the Year, went to Stephen Cornelissen, group CEO of aged care provider Mercy Health. Since Cornelissen joined the not-for-profit organisation in 2011, Mercy Health has expanded its services nationally and continues to grow.
Chris Dutton, founder and CEO of The CEO Magazine, said picking a winner hasn’t got any easier since he started the awards in 2012.
“Wading and choosing your way through the finalists to pick a winner proves to be so difficult every year when we host these awards,” he said. “The quality, excellence and ability of these leaders is outstanding. They are all deserving recipients of these awards and we congratulate them.”
The winners were picked by an expert panel that included Naomi Simson, founder of RedBalloon; Scott Stavretis, CEO, Acquire BPO; Mark van Dyck, managing director APAC, Compass Group; John Karagounis, CEO, The CEO Circle; Chris Dutton, CEO, The CEO Magazine; and Daniel Di Loreto, managing director, The CEO Magazine.
A full list of winners:
Job Specific Awards
CEO of the Year: Stephen Cornelissen, Group CEO, Mercy Health
CEO of the Year (runner-up): Christine Holgate, CEO, Blackmores
CEO of the Year (highly commended): Nigel Garrard, Managing Director and CEO, Orora
Managing Director of the Year: Nathan Cheong, Managing Director, BioCeuticals
Managing Director of the Year (runner-up): Karen Stocks, Managing Director, Twitter Australia
Chairperson of the Year: Tina West, Chairperson, Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council
Chairperson of the Year (runner-up): Rod Douglas, Chairman, Mr Rental
CFO of the Year: Michael Harvey, COO and CFO, Australian Radio Network
CFO of the Year (runner up): Aaron Canning, CFO, Blackmores
CIO of the Year: William Confalonieri, Chief Digital Officer and CIO and Vice President, Deakin University
CIO of the Year (runner-up): Simon Raik-Allen, Chief Technical Advisor, MYOB
HR Executive of the Year: Linda Redfearn, Head of Human Resources, Blackmores
Marketing Executive of the Year: John Arnott, Executive Director (Customer), ING Direct Australia
Sales Executive of the Year: Suzy Nicoletti, Head of Online Sales, Twitter Australia
Executive Assistant of the Year: Larissa Auditore, Executive Assistant to CEO and Managing Director, Insurance and Care NSW
Not-for-profit Executive of the Year: Anne Bryce, CEO, Achieve Australia
Start-up Executive of the Year: Lincoln Easton, CEO, Progressclaim.com
Young Executive of the Year: David Rohrsheim, General Manager ANZ, UBER
Want the latest retail news delivered straight to your inbox? Click here to sign up to the retailbiz newsletter.