John Caldwell, Business and Career Commentator
I absolutely loved recording this Podcast episode with John Caldwell, Business and Career Commentator.
He is living proof that success has everything to do with how hard you’re willing to work for it. John Caldwell is an inspiring CEO, author and the 2014 Australian of the Year - Victoria. JC is also host of The Voice Radio show, as an entertainment and media reporter on KIIS FM with his new National radio show, Celeb HQ, as well regularly appearing as a guest panellist on Channel TEN’s Studio 10.
While many successful entrepreneurs share stories of their humble beginnings, John’s difficult upbringing makes his success and inspirational career trajectory all the more impressive.
Growing up in caravan parks, John was raised by parents who lived through endless cycles of violence, alcoholism and poverty. He was also the victim of serious bullying, something that has informed his advocacy work in this area.
Despite the odds, John was determined to rewrite his story and break free from the negativity, drama and poverty.
John started working for Domino’s Pizza after dropping out of school when he was just 15 years old and homeless. While he had no prior experience, he made himself indispensable by being the guy who would do whatever was needed. It wasn’t unheard of for him to drive for an hour just to pick up a 2-hour shift. Nothing was beneath him or too much trouble. Soon enough, John’s passion and drive was rewarded with a series of promotions as he grew into different roles, including the National HR Manager, even though he had no formal HR qualifications.
At 21, John took over his first franchise and transformed it from being one of the brand’s worst performing to becoming one of the top 2 performing stores in Australia. John soon acquired a second store and was recognised with multiple awards including Franchise Store of the Year and Top Franchisee globally. He then went onto to pursue senior management roles at Australia’s fast-fashion giant Supré where he held various HR and general management positions.
It was during this time that John used various recruitment agencies to find staff at all levels in the business. He was disappointed with the service and overall offering of the agencies and realised there was a gap in the Australia market to do retail recruitment with a difference.
John is now the CEO and Australian based founder of RWR Group which incorporates Retail World Resourcing, RWR Executive, Hospoworld Resourcing, RWR Health and UK based Fashion World, with 18 recruitment agencies across Australia, NZ and the UK.
RWR Group operations are partially franchised, a model that John is passionate about as it provides a solid foundation for processes and systems, taking the stress out of setting up backend operations for new business owners and enabling them to focus on what they do best.
Thanks to John’s strategic foresight and ability to act on new market trends with haste, RWR Group is growing organically, with health and corporate recruitment set to be its next focus market. While most people will have you believe that bigger means better in business, John says that by halving the company’s headcount a few years ago and focusing on delivering better outcomes at all levels of the business, sales remained steady and naturally resulted in greater profits. John believes more business owners should be willing to admit that profits are their core focus, because a profitable business means a happier boss, a more positive work environment and the ability to be more generous as an employer.
John says that are no ‘secrets’ to his success, just a powerful why and how.