Meet the Lampada Team – Introducing our CEO, Robin Gilchrist
13th May 2020
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Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am married to Adele and we have two sons and three grandchildren, I have lived near Winchester in Hampshire for 21 years. My hobbies include supporting Bradford City football club (since I was 9 yrs old) following F1 racing, scuba diving and building model railway layouts to exhibit. I love to collect and drink nice wines, travel still excites me despite 17 years working in international roles; – and I love garlic, loads of garlic on my food.
What were you doing before you joined the Lampada team?
I was retired and doing a number of non-executive director roles, having worked in International telecommunications for 19 years and before that consultancy. I also lecture at Durham University Business School where I hold a Professorship in International Business and Marketing.
What is your job role at Lampada?
My role has been interim CEO since January 2019, with the specific brief to stabilise and structure Lampada so that it can be handed over to a new CEO with a strong customer and revenue base to provide a platform for growth. This has been extremely challenging, but also great fun, and I really enjoy working with a young and vibrant team and seeing them develop and grow at Lampada. We have developed a strong customer base and this provides an exciting launch pad for the company as we look to the next 2-3 years.
Tell us your favourite thing about working at Lampada…
Each day is different – we can be dealing with one of the UK’s Fire Services one moment, then it’s the police or a local authority, or a large telecoms company, or potentially one of the Universities faculties. Products range from Fire & Rescue to medical, to Human Factors, banking, telecoms, tourist sector etc. It is extremely varied and challenging and I think it’s really exciting to see the innovation and creativity of our designers and developers becoming reality.
What is your proudest achievement?
Become a Scuba Diving Instructor 12 years ago at the age of 50, it was both physically and mentally demanding and the final course over a whole weekend was completed in the UK during a cold and very wet Autumn. That opened a whole new series of experiences to me and since then the fantastic look of pure joy on the faces of students who have completed their dive courses has more than repaid that cold wet weekend in 2008.
What do you get up to out of work?
Normally, I try to scuba dive one day on a weekend, spend time with my grandchildren and love going out for nice relaxed meals in the local pubs and restaurants around Hampshire with my wife. If I can get a quiet 30 mins you may find me in my garage messing about with my latest model railway layout build project.
What do you prefer, tea or coffee?
Tea, no sugar, with milk and not too strong, I need to drink it fairly quickly as I hate lukewarm or cold tea.
What is your favourite movie?
Good question, can I cheat and say my favourite two? Pretty Woman and Top Gun. I cannot wait for the Top Gun sequel to be released later this year. I really enjoy all of the Tarantino movies too.
If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?
That’s a difficult question as I have been lucky enough to meet the three people that I always wanted to meet…
I met Stirling Moss in Barbados and we had coffee together with our wives, he was such a gentleman and he had loads of humorous stories from his racing days.
Peter Ustinov was the Chancellor at Durham when I received my Post Grad degree and he was a wonderful orator and raconteur.
Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, I sat next to him at a dinner in Hawaii and we spent a lovely evening exchanging stories and discussing his experiences. He is a really good artist and he told me that every one of his paintings has a little bit of moon dust included in the paint. They were not supposed to bring anything back but he brought some dust from the surface of the moon!
Do you have a party trick??
Maybe a form of magic? I can make a Vodka Martini disappear fairly quickly, does that count?