Meet the MD: Mark Ambler of Blue Logic

Mark Ambler was appointed as MD of Blue Logic back in 2007 and has transformed the firm into one of Yorkshire's leading IT Services companies. He told BQ about his management journey so far.

Describe your role in no more than 100 words.

As MD of Blue Logic, I am responsible for establishing and growing the business to be the Premier IT Services provider in Yorkshire.

My role involves overseeing the development of the whole business; working with our sales and marketing, technical and web services teams to strategise and harness new opportunities and technologies to best benefit and enhance our services.

I also spend a lot of time dealing with acquisition opportunities, which are crucial to extending our potential customer reach.

What is it the company does?

At Blue Logic, we all share the same goal: to provide businesses with a first class IT service. We are here to help customers get maximum benefit from their IT investments; offering services including IT support, installation, managed services, cloud solutions, and electrical services. We are accredited Sage 200 and Platinum Sage 50 partners, and we can also boast a full service digital marketing agency!

What do you believe makes a great leader?

Someone who can generally say that they care about people. Taking the time to nurture and develop your staff to be the very best, whilst simultaneously investing in your customers, is key to leading a successful company.

A great leader is capable of inspiring others, and creating a company ‘vision’ is crucial to that.

What has been your biggest challenge in your current position?

My biggest personal challenge has been the transition from being less ‘hand’s on’ with the day to day business logistics, and spending more time with ‘people’ rather than customers. As MD, you do have to prioritise by delegating responsibilities to other senior management.

How do you alleviate the stress that comes with your job?

You’ll commonly find me in the gym, cycling, or playing golf and squash. I’m a huge sports lover, and find that getting active really helps to deal with the physical and mental stresses of business.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

As highlighted previously, one of my main passions in life is sport, so my dream was to be a professional sportsman – either in badminton or squash.

Any pet hates in the workplace?

Being overly domineering – I don’t feel that behaviour is necessary at any level in business. Not delivering on promises is also another bugbear of mine; its best practice to only commit to what you can realistically achieve.

Where do you see the company in five years’ time?

Our business plan for 2020 involves targets growing Turnover to circa £10m, and increasing our staffing levels to 100 people. Driving this growth is our desire to encompass a larger geographical reach, whilst still retaining our key focus on Yorkshire and the north.

We are passionate about expanding and developing our services for customers, but are simultaneously investing to maintain our small business, ‘family’ feel. This is crucial to both Blue Logic’s continued success, and to our key company values.

What advice would you give to an aspiring business leader?

One of my mottos is ‘Never stop learning,’ and keeping an open and enquiring mind is crucial to succeeding in business. I would advise dedicating a certain amount of time per week learning all aspects of what it takes to run a business; from financials to management to logistics.

Where did you start your career?

My IT career started literally by chance in 1982. Having completed my degree in geology, and unsure of my next move, an acquaintance suggested the IT industry to me during a squash game. I started my first job working out of a room above my boss’s garage in Bramhope, Leeds.

Give us a brief timeline of your career so far.

As mentioned above, I started working within the IT industry in 1982, so I now have over 30 years of knowledge and experience. I stayed with my original company, Byron, for 15 years, until myself and some others started a management buyout in 1997.

From our starting point of 10 staff, we grew the company to 55 people by the time it was sold in 2004.

Following on from gardening leave, I undertook some consultancy work for other IT companies, predominantly advising on Accounts and ERP Software.

I was then approached by some former colleagues with the concept that has now become Blue Logic.

Started in January 2007, we have grown to become one of the premier IT Services companies in Yorkshire; with over 70 staff and a yurnover of circa £6m.