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Les Mills International transforms leadership to drive next growth stage

Les Mills International transforms leadership to drive next growth stage
July 12, 2019

Les Mills International is transforming its leadership culture to accelerate the next phase of its development and fuel its relentless drive for growth and innovation.

The leading group fitness and fitness content brand strengthened its global organisation at the end of last year with the creation of highly autonomous teams around the world.

The culture shift began with founder and Managing Director Phillip Mills (pictured) taking on an Executive Director role that will allow him to focus more on his passion for innovation and entrepreneurship.

Mills advised that the move is to empower his senior leadership team to take on the responsibility to build this new leadership approach across the business, advising “I have put a great deal of thought into what our organization needs to take us through the next stage of development, and I believe that we now have a rock-star team of senior leaders with the energy, vision and skills to ensure we deliver on our mission to create a fitter planet.”

The changes have seen Chief Marketing Officer Clive Ormerod  become the new Les Mills International Chief Executive, former Chief Financial Officer Doug Robb become the Chief Operations Officer, and USA-based Jean-Michel Fournier is the Chief Executive Officer of Les Mills Media, with UK-based Keith Burnet take on the role of Chief Executive - Global Markets.

Mills added "it doesn’t end there. To realise our true potential, we need strong leadership across the business. Our commitment to all our people is that everyone has a role to play in leadership. It’s in our DNA – there are 140,000 Les Mills instructors that lead workouts every day and we want everyone in our teams around the world to step up and lead too.”

With Les Mills poised for ongoing growth, Mills says the time is right to make the transition from an operational role to allow him more time to provide guidance and strategic direction across the areas he loves most, and where he can add the most value.

He commented "with an excellent senior team and our network of outstanding national CEOs, we are exactly where we need to be for our next phase of growth and innovation. We operate in a highly competitive industry where change is constant, so the way we work together needs to be as innovative and fit for future as our core product.”

Mills stressed that Les Mills would continue to operate from its spiritual home in New Zealand. The Mills family will also remain as committed as ever to the business, with Phillip’s wife Jackie Mills as Chief Creative Officer and their adult children Diana and Les in ever-growing roles.

The transition has been taking place through the early months of 2019.

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8th April 2019 - Les Mills International partners with Disney to inspire youth fitness

19th March 2019 - Les Mills and Netpulse partner to launch on-demand solution for fitness clubs

27th November 2018 - Les Mills New Lynn named New Zealand’s supreme club of the year

23rd November 2018 - Les Mills Asia Pacific names new Chief Executive

5th November 2018 - New Zealand’s longest serving major gym celebrates 50 years

25th October 2018 - Reebok Les Mills Live to return to Singapore in 2019

4th October 2018 - Les Mills welcomes research showing that dance is the best exercise to help stay mentally young

26th September 2018 - Les Mills collaborates with Hollywood actress Nina Dobrev to launch fresh new dance workout

25th July 2018 - Les Mills partner heads panel on how gyms win on social media

22nd July 2018 - Les Mills’ Bryce Hastings suggests upper limit for HIIT training

14th September 2017 - Les Mills’ New Zealand gyms win customer satisfaction award


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