Every day, Adrien Thominet is up at 5 am. First, he checks emails from their offices in countries with significantly different time zones as France where he is based so that to his words, “catch them before their day is finished.”
Thominet is no ordinary CEO. He leads the ECS Group, one of the largest GSSA companies in the world with 69 subsidiaries and 137 offices in 47 countries. The company handles about 2,500 tons of cargo every day for different airlines serving different cities and airports.
It’s a tough job that needs methodical and time-tested sophisticated system to ensure a seamless process to deliver what is expected of the company in the competitive air freight industry.
After spending about an hour answering emails, Thominet says he reads the news online, do an hour of cardio or resistance training or walk his dog, Jean-Luc.
“My normal morning begins very early, usually around 5 am, checking emails from countries in significantly different time zones hoping to catch them before their day is finished. After spending an hour on email, read most of the news online, I do an hour of either cardio or resistance training each morning,” he said. “Sometimes I bring my dog, Jean-Luc, along.”
Working out and waking up early on a regular basis gives Thominet more than enough energy to carry on with his day, more importantly, spend time with his four children no matter how busy he may be.
“Waking up early allows me to get my four kids ready for school and drop them off, and still get to work by 8:30 in the morning. Spending time with my kids is precious as it brings me energy for the whole day,” the CEO said.
Describing his children as his “breath” that sustains his life, Thominet says he cherishes the time he spends with them and make up for whatever is lost during his business trips.
“And regarding my way to unwind…the time I spent with my kids is very cherished and non-negotiable. They are my breath. And because you cannot accomplish great deals without refocusing on yourself, I save some rare but precious time, doing nothing but being happy. I wish I could have some more,” he said.
At work, Thominet plans for his business trips to meet prospects, airline partners or local ECS teams. The company has more than 1,000 employees all over the world.
“More than 1000 employees are working for our company. It’s more difficult to keep tabs on employees when you run a global enterprise in several time zones. That’s no excuse for not making the effort. It’s the only way, to feel firsthand what is happening in different parts of the company,” he said.
As time could be their friend or foe, Thominet says he prepares the company’s activities for the next 18 to 36 months with the help of ECS Group Board Chairman Bernard Schmoll.
The two executives treat their employees like family, guiding and directing them for future growth and opportunities.
“We are like a family and being CEO is a job I take very seriously. It would be a lie to say that I’m always confident. We cannot fail. Success is the guarantee of the good health of each of us. I am not alone and we are all working for that. As of today, everything ties hand in hand perfectly,” Thominet optimistically said.