It’s been a year since Darren Fullerton became CEO of Frucor Suntory. To celebrate, we sat down with Darren to ask him about his first year with us. Here’s what he had to say…
Since taking the helm of Frucor Suntory, where do you think our greatest opportunities lie?
Our business can be characterised as one with amazing brands, incredibly talented and committed people, and a really positive, almost infectious culture. What an amazing foundation! It also offers the potential to grow, to play in more categories and in more channels, and to leverage our parent company, Suntory.
How would you describe Frucor Suntory’s company culture?
It is, without question, the best culture I have ever worked in! What I see is a unique combination of a fun and vibrant workplace, hard work and drive, and respect for each other on an interpersonal level. I also see the opportunity to invest in and leverage that culture even more.
What have you learnt about yourself, personally or professionally, since starting your journey with Frucor Suntory?
I learned pretty quickly that I missed being in the FMCG industry, with great brands and exciting consumer-based initiatives, all packaged up in a growth mindset. I probably also re-learned that in every crisis there is opportunity, and resilience is a bankable commodity… we should all build it, because somewhere along the line you will need it.
What’s something we wouldn’t necessarily know about your day job?
Great question! I try to operate as an open book, but perhaps people would not realise that I spend a lot of my time working on where we could take this business into the long term (i.e. 5 to 10 years). Our potential amazes me, and we are lucky that in our Senior Leadership Group here at Frucor Suntory we have the talent and experience to really drive the business, day in day out without the need for a great deal of intervention
What’s the secret to maintaining a good work/life balance? How do you like to unwind outside work?
I like to refer to it as work-life integration. Everyone is different, so the notion of balance means different things to different people.
For me my work and my life is integrated – I don’t really separate them consciously. I don’t feel over-worked or under-worked, but I do know how to manage my energy levels, remove myself mentally when I need to and dedicate to non-work things with the same focus as I do work things, particularly with family. What works for me is that I am up at 5am every day ready to go and get a lot out of my days early. Just a personal preference… not right or wrong.