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Strategy versus reality: bridging the gap

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“When I founded Meotec in 2005, I had recognized that many companies simply didn’t have the knowledge, skill and experience to transform a theoretical strategy into a successful and rewarding practical implementation,” says CEO Richard Caron. “My vision was to create an operational consulting firm which links the work of strategic consultancies and engineering companies, and support all the tactical and operational questions that arise during a strategy implementation project.”

Meotec’s service portfolio consists of four streams of work. The project management division helps clients to plan, implement and control their projects, to optimize quality and guarantee results. The second division, Meobuy, supports clients with purchasing and logistics issues such as process improvement, outsourcing, risk, and supply chain management.

Economic performance is the focus of Meofi; the division aids clients in sourcing and mobilizing accountants and management controllers, and optimizing and controlling budgets. The fourth area of work concerns the setting up of efficient and effective quality control processes.

Mr. Caron’s view that the market would welcome such a service was spot on. Meotec has gone from strength to strength, and in March 2018 the company was awarded the RSM European Business Award ‘French Business of the Year with turnover of up to 25 million EUR’. So what has turned a simple idea into such a success?

“We have three unique selling points,” says Mr. Caron. “Firstly, we are service providers who do the very best for our customers. We question and challenge ourselves on everything we do, and we stay close to our clients throughout the project. Secondly, our consultants have the cumulative expertise and experience to recommend the best possible solutions. Thirdly, we achieve our goals through constant innovation. We rise to every challenge, we are direct and honest in a constructive way, and we recognize that there is more than one answer to every problem. We are not always politically correct, and sometimes our solutions are somewhat unconventional, but if clients choose to work with us, they know that our recommendations will be challenging yet effective.”

Richard Caron
I recognized that many companies simply didn’t have the knowledge, skill and experience to transform a theoretical strategy into a successful and rewarding practical implementation. Richard CaronCEO and Founder

With 315 highly qualified permanent staff in its headquarters in Boulogne-Billancourt near Paris and branch offices in Lyon and Brussels, Meotec also offers six-month internships to international students, who are given free rein.

“They are a new generation, and we are interested in their ideas and approach to new technologies,” explains Mr. Caron. “We give them license to be as crazy and unconventional as they wish, and we learn from them. Through their work, we help them develop their soft skills and prepare them for the professional world. We make job offers to many of the students at the end of their internship, and 90% of them come back to work for us when they have graduated. This is a tremendous conversion rate. Young people want a sense of purpose, mobility and work-life balance, and this is exactly what we offer.”

Meotec works with almost 150 clients, from large concerns to start-ups, in a range of different sectors from luxury retail to agriculture. Currently, the majority of its clients are in France, but the firm has solid plans for expansion.

“We want to show that our service is exportable,” stresses Mr. Caron. “Over the next three years, we plan to open new branches in Switzerland, where we already have clients, Germany, and probably Spain. Our aim is that within five years, 50% of our turnover will be generated abroad. This will enable more sustainable growth and better career perspectives for our staff.”

Other ambitious plans include a major digital project. “We have a five-year plan to develop extensive digital services which benefit customers – online billing, accounts, work tools, and staff management instruments,” sums up Mr. Caron. “Our strong vision for the firm is always kept firmly in mind.”

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