When he stepped into the role of CEO at Altus Traffic, Jeff Doyle had a pretty good idea of where it was at and where it needed to go. Having been on the board of directors for six months, and having met the Chairman and Founder, David Lundberg, when he coached his children at football, Jeff had an in-road.
An ex‐professional soccer player, Jeff decided at 27 that he should get a real job. “Firstly, I played with a lot of lads who were much better than me, and back then there wasn’t a lot of money in the game,” he explained. “Secondly, their careers after playing were often limited to working in factories or on building sites. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but I wanted to see if I could glean a better career, so I took a step back and focused. Really focused.”
Jeff then moved on to selling pens and pencils for Macquarie Stationary (which became Staples), who at that point was doing about $100 million in revenue. “And lo and behold, about 12 years later we were a $1.3-billion listed company,” says Jeff. “I was very fortunate—through good timing, a lot of luck, and a hell of a lot of hard work, that I was able to build myself a career there, and 12 years later I was on the executive board running one of their biggest and most profitable business units.”
Jeff then became the COO, and 18 months later, the CEO for Adecco ANZ—the world’s largest recruitment company. “I ended up just shy of seven years with Adecco, where we were able to produce record numbers on both the top and bottom lines—and, just as importantly, had a lot of fun doing it,” he says.
While Jeff’s career was taking off, in 2002 David Lundberg set up Altus Traffic, and they too moved on to phenomenal growth—42 per cent CAGR over an eight‐year period. “It basically went from a start‐up in 2002 to $90 million in 2013,” Jeff explains. “And at that stage, after leaving Adecco I was looking for my next executive role.
“When I left Adecco, I was in a great position as I was sitting on a number of boards while looking for my next executive role. So when David approached me to join Altus as a non‐executive director, I had already known him for many years, and had always admired the Altus story as well as the team.”