Published On: Mon, Sep 23rd, 2019

Kevin Whiting, Managing Director of MACO UK

First Job: I joined a successful European
engineering company at the age of 16 and completed a good old fashioned 5-Year Mechanical and Production Engineering Apprenticeship. As soon as I finished they took me on full time in Production Planning where I specialised in Planning plus Time and Motion Study.
When did you join MACO: I joined MACO in April 2009 as the Operations Manager, working in this role at the start of an exciting change program at MACO before I had the great opportunity to become the Managing Director in January 2012.
Most useful / favourite gadget: My iPhone for everything closely followed by my sat nav watch for the golf course.
Favourite / most useful website: My saved “Home Pages” look like this….MACO Intranet for keeping in touch with the business, the MACO UK Homepage, BBC News, BMW Login for talking to my car, and the Institute of Directors members website which is a great source of information.
Business Person you admire: My original boss at MACO HQ, a gentleman called Roland Schmidt who taught me more about leadership, strategy and change management than I thought I could ever know.
Recommended hotel for business: No real clear favoured choice, however we always aim to book a hotel where the food is really good and the room is comfortable and relaxing. I’m a firm believer that when myself or my team are away from home they need a place to relax and be comfortable so that is really important to us when booking a hotel room. 
Best business decision: Many smaller decisions whilst being part of the team that reshaped and change managed the MACO UK business into the team, the strategy and the working environment that makes me very happy and proud to wear the MACO badge on my jacket today.
Other interests: Family first, a wonderful wife, 3 grown up young ladies and 2 beautiful Grandchildren. Then in any time leftover, my motorcycle and the golf course.

Working Week: On my days in the MACO UK Headquarters in Sittingbourne then it’s typically a 6.45am leave home to enjoy the commute, and beat the M25 traffic. My weeks are really varied being in the office, seeing our Partners across the UK, as well as contributing to the wider aspects of MACO at our Global headquarters in Salzburg, Austria. The days are typically full on, early starts, lots of travel and late finishes…..but what a great job to have!

Working Location: Our state of the art UK Headquarters in the ‘Garden of England’ in Kent is a joy to enter every day. MACO moved there some 20 years now but the building is still fantastic. High ceilings, great amount of space with an automated pick by voice ordering system in our warehouse which is the heart of our operation. Office space is grouped into open plan spaces where the level of interaction is kept intentionally very high.

Main Feature on ‘Kevin Whiting, Managing Director of MACO UK

MACO enjoys something that I never truly valued until I joined. My background was in very corporate businesses, manufacturing and servicing even bigger corporate businesses, with very hungry shareholders. The learning curve was steep and sometimes brutal, but joining MACO repositioned my faith in working with customers and staff alike. MACO has always been a family owned business, growing in stature since 1947 from a small building in Austria to the multi-site World-wide operation it is today. Throughout this journey that the MACO family has been on, their true values have always been at the foundations. This provides a relatively unique outlook in today’s world, and one that can be transmitted throughout our customers, our staff and beyond.

So when I look back at the last 12 months of trading, which no-one can say has been easy, I look back with a certain amount of pleasure in the knowledge that we did our best in a difficult market in an open and honest way where we cared about our customers business alongside our own. Yes Brexit has created a lot of noise, raising uncertainty and impacting currency. The raw materials market continued to be buoyant, again working against us, but MACO have the longer term in mind, this is our strength where we join our customers in the joint battle, creating benefit for both of us. It’s no use surviving the difficult periods if our customers don’t. We are in this together!

Results therefore have been kind to us, reflecting the hard work put in by the team, our new product lines bring growth and the traditional parts remain stable. We have been rewarded by clear product strategies and brilliant new marketing strengths to bring us closer to the market.
 MACO UK have been on a fantastic journey over the last ten years. One of our most rewarding decisions was our product strategy and roadmap which we keep fresh and specifically relevant to the UK market. Our product roadmap is always one or more generations ahead so we know what we need today and tomorrow. It’s great to be able to split our management time between the here and now, and the door and window hardware of the future. MACO live by the ‘Creating Innovation’ tagline and all the way back to our first shootbolt Espag product, our MACO MK1, through to today and tomorrow, the future paths are very clear.

2019 see’s the FiT Show come around once again, something that MACO has supported since the first show back in 2013. Whether in the consecutive running years, or the bi-annual event, content and new products / services is always the challenge. There is no point going with the same thing year after year. This is where our decisions to attend the FiT Show have traditionally been quite easy, our developing product and service portfolio has improved every year, and this year will be no exception. From our original beginnings in Espags, through to our door and window of the future, we have something for every forward thinking partner. Whether that be a Distribution partner where we work towards differentiation and reducing stock lines through product improvement, to fabricators where we are delivering robust, fit and forget products, to installers where simple adjustments and reduced service calls maximise efficiency, or us as homeowners where we guarantee the longer term working of our products giving the design, security and comfort that is expected of the demanding market from a leading brand.

Is it possible to keep developing and pushing innovation? In a word, yes! The industry lacks true innovation leadership, at MACO we live and breathe it every day. The FiT Show will launch products that are part of our roadmap, we are on a journey that allows for market pace as well as our desire to shape the future. We brought our door of the future to the market for evaluation three to four years ago, now it comes to reality. We will launch the latest MACO Casement Window platform that has advantages for the complete supply chain, and we will show the window of the future vision that will once again challenge and change the way we look at openings in property.

Right alongside the development of products and services, and the key to our success here at MACO, is our staff. Training and development of staff plays a vital role in the development of the business. We encourage and support our staff to further develop themselves, we invest heavily in this area. Many of our staff take on huge personal undertakings alongside busy daily roles to further their own development and we salute them for their efforts. As we all grow as individuals the MACO insight and leadership grows as well, our staff constantly challenge the status quo, being encouraged to engage in every level of the business. One of our biggest strengths is creating the business plan together with a shared vision of the future, knowledge is power, and the shared knowledge at MACO is a key element of our success.

The next part of the MACO story is a very exciting one, and one that I am proud to lead. Our vision for the future of door and window operation is coming to life, the visions are becoming reality, and each product development brings us closer to contributing to the fast changing and challenging world we all live in.

Tel: 01795 433900