Meet the MD: Olivier Cavaliere, Oltec FM

Meet the MD: Olivier Cavaliere, Oltec FM

Olivier leads building and facilities management firm Oltec FM, and manages to run a tight ship whilst keeping his team relaxed... even if that means bringing his puppies to play in the office!
  • Describe your role in no more than 100 words
    • As the CEO of Oltec FM I manage the strategic direction of the business on a day to day basis, ensuring that all our staff are happy and that our customers receive the high-quality service they deserve.

      It is my responsibility to add value to the service we offer to customers by innovating and improving productivity, whilst also maintaining a safe and happy working environment.

      • What is it the company does?
        • Oltec FM is a market leader in the provision of integrated building and facilities management services. Our services include cleaning, security, mechanical and engineering support, pest control, and landscaping. We work with major partners in both the public and private sector, including large retail and leisure destinations, high profile commercial buildings and sensitive industrial and manufacturing sites.

          • Give us a brief timeline of your career so far – where did you start, how did you move on?
            • I came to the UK from France on a six month work placement when I was a student and I’m still here nearly 25 years later.

              My first job in the security industry was with a company called Antec Security Ltd - I got the job because I played tennis with the owner! I then worked for Antec for seven years and – having made some money in buy-to-let rentals – I eventually bought the company when my employer wanted to retire.

              From then the company went from strength to strength, moving into new sectors and providing new services at the request of our customers. In 2005, following a number of successful acquisitions, Oltec FM was formed as a multi-sector, multi-service facilities management company.

              So for the last 16 years, I have been at the helm of the company and worked hard to grow it from £1m turnover to over £16m turnover it is today.

              • What do you believe makes a great leader?
                • First and foremost a great leader must have strong convictions – you have to be decisive and see your choices through. For me a good leader has a range of key qualities; a strong personality, courage, clear vision and most of all an ambition to succeed. They need to encourage and support the team to perform to their optimum level at all times and lead by example to drive the success of their teamorganisation.

                  • What has been your biggest challenge in your current position?
                    • The biggest challenge over the last 16 years has been to transform the company from a retail security specialist to what has now become Oltec FM, a market leader in the provision of multi-service facilities management. With the retail sector in decline after the financial crisis the transition was painful but absolutely necessary to progress to the next chapter and continue to grow the business.

                      Expanding into new sectors is always difficult as we have to take on new staff with the relevant expertise. Managing a growing workforce has been a major learning curve, but something that has proved very rewarding.

                      • How do you alleviate the stress that comes with your job?
                        • One of my favourite hobbies is sport. I try to play tennis at least twice a week as it’s a great way to destress after a busy day at the office - although I don’t always get chance to play as much as I’d like!

                          • When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
                            • At five years old I wanted to be a taxi driver. By the time I was 16 my ambition was to become a millionaire and drive a Ferrari - although I did not have a clue how I would get there! I was always fascinated by success stories.

                              • Any pet hates in the workplace? What do you do about them?
                                • We have no pet hates at Oltec FM, it’s a very relaxed place to work and we embrace a range of different people with different working styles. I even bring my two little puppies into the office to brighten everyone’s day. We have a great team and a supportive ethos and we like it this way!

                                  • Where do you see the company in five year’s time?
                                    • Growing the company to a £100m turnover has always been what I have wanted to achieve. I firmly believe that if you set a high goal and believe in yourself it’s very much attainable. However, I would never want the growth of the business to be to the detriment of the quality of the service we provide to our customers.

                                      • What advice would you give to an aspiring business leader?
                                        • Never give up on your dreams. However difficult it might seem I truly believe people can make them a reality through flair, hard work and determination.