My Life’s Work | Paul Dimond CMG, Deputy Chairman, DAKS Simpson Group
In this weekly series, we meet a Walpole member chief executive to discover what makes them tick, how they define success, and what keeps them awake at night. This week, Paul Dimond CMG, Deputy Chairman, DAKS Simpson Group.
“I joined DAKS in 2007 after 42 years as a British diplomat focused on economic and commercial affairs in Asia, California and Europe, with spells at the FCO and the old DTI in London. A specialist in Japan, I spent my early 20s absorbing kanji and learning about the Japanese business world and the quality of demand. After four assignments in Japan, I served as Deputy Ambassador to the Netherlands, HM Consul-General at Los Angeles and HM Ambassador to the Philippines. Seconded to a British firm for a year in the late 1980s I learned about medical devices, anaesthesia and change management.”
WHAT DOES BRITISH LUXURY MEAN TO YOU?
Skilled tailoring; a genuine and credible British heritage story; quality, reliability and innovation.
WHAT’S YOUR VISION FOR DAKS?
Short-term, a successful celebration of our 125th anniversary in 2019. Beyond that, spreading the appeal of good tailoring to men and women in new geographical and generational markets.
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER YOUR GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Climbing Mount Fuji twice; actually enjoying fugu meals.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS?
Contributing to the achievements of the next generations.
WHAT’S YOUR GREATEST EXTRAVAGANCE?
Spending time on my heritage book collection.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?
Teamwork, diversity, international exchange of best practice.
Much to do, so little time…
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR GREATEST REGRET?
Je ne regrette rien.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR SMARTEST BUSINESS IDEA?
The decision in 1965 to learn Japanese.
WHAT WAS YOUR BIG BREAK?
Joining DAKS, as opportunity to discover first-hand the challenges of maintaining sight of the wood as well as the trees in the global market.
WHATS YOUR GUIDING PRINCIPLE?
Clear communication and remember strategy.
WHICH LIVING PERSON DO YOU MOST ADMIRE?
Her Majesty The Queen.
WHICH WORDS OR PHRASES DO YOU MOST OVER USE?
“When I was…”
WHAT KEEPS YOU AWAKE AT NIGHT?
Drafting documents in semi-dream state.
WHAT DO YOU MOST VALUE IN YOUR FRIENDS?
Loyalty and candour.
IN A PARALLEL LIFE, WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING?
Medieval church architect, of course.
WHAT PIECE OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE SOMEONE ENTERING THE LUXURY INDUSTRY NOW?
Study what drives luxury consumers in East Asia, familiarise yourself with sushi, learn another language well, emphasize constant creativity. Listen well.