Richard Hemmings: "Customers' trust means the world to me"

Richard Hemmings is Perkins general sales manager for EAME Electric Power. He puts his success in sales down to his strong values – always keeping to his promises, acting with integrity and passionately working to deliver the best results for Perkins customers.

Richard, can you describe your latest role to us in a couple of sentences?

It’s my job to lead our sales team, steer our strategy, monitor performance and ensure we implement the key objectives to achieve our targets. My principal focus is always on our customers – and making sure we do the right things that lead to successful, long-lasting relationships with them.

What previous roles paved the way for you to become the head of Perkins EAME Electric Power sales team?

I’ve spent my whole career with Perkins after joining the business 12 years ago on its graduate programme which lasted 18 months. For the next six years, I was part of the sales team which supported our major global OEM customers. The role gave me a great understanding of key developments in engine technology and emissions control and I learned how important it is to build positive relationships with our customers.

I spent the next two years as a strategy consultant, focusing on key growth initiatives in several sectors, including electric power. A highlight was working on the early stage business case for our new product, the 200-250 kVA 1206, which launches in 2019 and is a really exciting addition to our engine line-up.

Before taking the reins as general sales manager, I was sales and marketing strategy manager. It was my responsibility to align our business and ensure we were focused on the right initiatives, which add genuine value to our customers, while profitably growing our business. 

Richard Hemmings

What’s the secret of building strong relationships with Perkins customers?

It’s largely about doing the simple things well. That means always keeping your promises and delivering on your commitments. You need to be able to have honest conversations, which is key to building trust. Customers also appreciate the fact that I become deeply engrained in their businesses. I work hard to understand their culture, priorities and initiatives so I can identify the right areas where our products and services can add genuine value and help them become more successful.

How would you describe your personality and outlook on life and work?

I’m an extremely positive person who is always 110 percent enthusiastic, passionate and committed to getting the best outcome for my customers, my team and business.

What skills and experience have you accumulated that allows you to add real value for Perkins EP customers?

I’ve been very fortunate to acquire a variety of different skills, perspectives and knowledge over more than a decade with Perkins. My focus on the customer and my commitment to delivering results will help me to fuel and develop trusting relationships. I’ll apply my strong leadership skills to motivate the sales team and ensure we execute and deliver on all our priority areas. At the same time, I’ll use my background in strategy to ensure we also think longer term, so we’re in the best place to deliver consistent results. Overall, I’ll continue to be dedicated to understanding our customers’ businesses, so we can bring them the benefits of Perkins engines across even more of their generator set range.

And finally Richard, how do you like to switch off from sales?

I can be quite obsessive about my work. If I have an idea at the weekend, I have to act on it straight away, which can be annoying for my wife. But to relax, I like to have some sort of project on the go at home, which allows me to put my practical skills and attention to detail to good use. In the past 18 months, we have renovated our house and garden from top to bottom – and I’ve developed a huge love of power tools. I’m also a devoted fan of Manchester United. I’m glad to see the interim boss, Ole Gunnar Solkskjaer implement some of the leadership skills that have worked for me, such as focusing on the teams strengths and investing time to uniting the team, while delivering results.

“I’m an extremely positive person who is always 110 percent passionate and committed about getting the best outcome for my customers, my team and business.”

Richard Hemmings, Perkins general sales manager for EAME Electric Power