From Branch to CEO to Entrepreneur Business instincts run strong

After more than 20 years with Kennards Hire, including the last three as CEO, Allen Besseling is giving full rein to his entrepreneurial instincts by leaving Kennards Hire and starting up his own business venture.

Twenty five years in the hire industry has taught him what needs to be done at all levels of a business to achieve innovative success. Allen worked his way up from a Serviceman-Driver to 2IC, through Branch Manager to Area Manager and then State Operations Manager for NSW, ACT and QLD. From there he proposed a partnership with Kennards Hire in the Lift & Shift business venture. It proved to be a runaway success for both parties.

Lift & Shift quickly established itself as the most successful specialist business division and in 2011 Kennards Hire restructured and he was appointed Specialist Business CEO and helped develop both the Pump & Power and Traffic divisions.

His appointment as CEO in 2012 signaled a watershed moment for Kennards Hire growth and inspired a cultural renaissance. By promoting from within, the company folklore—that anything is possible with hard work—was made concrete.

With the help of his management team, the past three years has seen: a 156 branch milestone, an expansion of the branch network into New Zealand, revitalization of the Kennards Hire internal culture and safety ethos, a Rail division launched and the company is set to achieve record results this financial year.

On announcing Allen’s departure, former CEO and current Chairman of the Kennards Hire Board, Peter Lancken, said “As CEO, Al has achieved great things for the business. He has led and developed a great team, and our family oriented culture has been refined, elevated and clearly enunciated—making sure we walk the talk. I am personally very disappointed that Al is leaving, but fully understand his reasons for doing so. We wish him every success in his new endeavours and look forward to celebrating the many achievements that lay ahead for him.”

Departing CEO Allen Besseling Allen Besseling

Allen now embarks on his next challenge with the same thrill that has driven his longstanding instincts for a business opportunity. “Kennards Hire has been an important part of my life for more than 20 years and I’m honoured to have participated in its growth as it heads toward becoming the best hire company in the world. Although sad at leaving my many family-like friends, what I’ve taken to heart is their customer centricity and belief in doing all the little things really, really well,” Allen said.

An extensive search was undertaken for the new CEO to ensure they had the requisite vision, track record and most importantly passion to inspire a family-in-business founded on innovation and excellence.

Liz Ward will take over as CEO on June 17 and will work with Allen to ensure a smooth transition for the Kennards Hire business. Her successful tenures at Sydney Trains, AUX Investments (the Qantas/Australia Post JV business), Centre Port Wellington (NZ) and Deep Cove Fisheries (NZ) convinced the Kennards Hire board that she could lead from the front.

Despite the tough nature of the industries Liz has worked in, her relationship skills and customer service orientation engaged and united work teams across all layers of company culture. That same collaborative, down-to-earth leadership style is very well suited to the Kennards Hire ethos of empowering people to drive all transformational change and growth from within the company.

Commenting on her appointment, Peter Lancken said, "We are delighted to have Liz joining us and I am personally excited and looking forward to working with her on the next stage of the Kennards Hire journey. She is an excellent fit with the culture and we believe her background and talent with people are assets that will help to strengthen our market leadership position.”

For more information on Kennards Hire or to find your closest Kennards Hire outlet visit www.kennards.com.au.