James Flew

Director and co-founder of Metzger some 23 years ago, James spends much of his time interfacing with Metzger clients to establish and agree their business requirements to identify what solutions will perform best and to explore how Metzger can deliver results on challenging, interesting and rewarding assignments. Constantly looking for new innovative ways of improving service, James works to evolve the business and introduce new practices and procedures. James also deals directly with candidates and has an active role throughout the interview processes. He has enviable experience in robust assessment of people, their technical ability, strengths, achievements and qualifications as well as an instinctive appreciation of their motivation, values and characteristics. James’s focus is to enhance sourcing and matching techniques for the business.

James attained his broad range of business skills while working in a growing family owned business; with responsibility for all aspects of the business from building production lines, managing the factories, working with contractors, sales and marketing strategy, running the purchasing supply chain and communicating at all levels from the Chairman to the shop floor. He read Business Studies with International Trade and Finance at university before entering the Search and Selection industry in 1990.

What is the best part of your role?

Achieving a balance between working in our more traditional markets, such as real estate, construction and business services as well as pushing us into new markets and technology sectors, such as AI and Cyber Security; then understanding how these can be blended together for both our clients’ and Metzger’s competitive advantage to the benefit of us all.

What values do you look for in a candidate?

Beyond the obvious technical capability and qualifications, I really need to see honesty, openness and energy, a commercial awareness and deep-rooted integrity.

What would be your best career advice?

There’s no substitute for hard work and dedication, a commitment to always strive to do better.

Can you name one person that has really inspired you and why?

Let me think … I have utmost respect and awe for the achievements of Isambard Kingdom Brunel who built everlasting ground breaking infrastructures such as the Clifton suspension bridge and closer to our offices the Maidenhead Railway Bridge over the Thames. He always considered the long-term effect of building quality structures and their impact on the environment. I feel his accomplishments mirror those of business today – work together as a team to create something enduring, effective and innovative.

Tell me something that no one knows about you?

I am an active water sports participant having sailed all my life and am in the process of learning to kite surf. I am also a keen supporter of Exeter Chiefs Rugby Union Club, who became the Aviva Premiership Rugby Champions 2017, beating giant clubs such as Wasps and Saracens along the way.

And finally, what is your burning ambition?

I love to help young people develop their initiatives and create successful high quality enterprises. For example, I once supported a Slovakian au pair with his ideas, until he was in a position to launch his own construction and maintenance business.