Glasgow-born Ian Robb left school at 16 to do a Mechanical Engineering apprenticeship. Hes held an array of roles from machine operator and maintenance manager, all the way to managing director and divisional managing director. Ian moved to Asia 28 years ago where he spent 20 years working with Morgan Advanced Materials. Before joining The Vita Group as its new Group CEO in December 2019, he was the Global President for Morgan Advanced Materials Thermal Ceramics & Molten Metal Systems divisions. Previously, hes worked in various capacities with Cape Plc and Esab AB, both divisions of the engineering firm Charter plc.
Within the first three months of joining The Vita Group, Ians key strategic imperatives were all aligned to reinforcing Vitas leading European status and maximizing how it could benchmark production by sharing experience and technology across its 36 different sites. Since joining the company, he and his team have initiated a strong EHS (Environment, Health & Safety) and ESG (Environment Social & Governance) culture across the group; built a highly experienced and effective management team in a clear and efficient structure; introduced systemised initiatives in operational and commercial excellence and selectively invested in innovation and new product development. Ian and his team established a One Vita approach around Vitas newly formed purpose and values: Creating Comfort; Delivering Performance; and Enhancing Everyday life.
Before starting his role, Ian spent time understanding the business environment in which The Vita Group operates. Setting a strict pre-100-day onboarding programme before his official start date, he was able to interview key executives face-to-face. These meetings provided an assessment of their effectiveness, compatibility, and future roles within the organisation. Other elements of the programme included understanding key expectations from the business owners, the board, and the Chairman. Ian visited many sites within the European footprint, along with specific executives, to understand style and managerial effectiveness.
All this activity was completed before his official start date, allowing immediate and sustainable changes to be made within the first 100 days of his tenure. Ian believes that the knowledge he gained during this period allowed him to reset the management team within the first three months of his start date.
Ians style is based on experience, working with multiple cultures and a significant understanding of what makes people want to succeed. He shares this openly and honestly with the team to ensure they achieve success and regularly receive feedback on what works and what does not.
Over the new few pages, we hear all about Ians tenure at The Vita Group and his plans for the organisation.