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Changing the Game

September 24, 2018

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Changing the Game

Alexander Janssen has an extraordinary 25 years of progressive board, executive management and consulting experience under his belt. In addition, he was recently selected by Corporate Vision in our 2018 Corporate Excellence Awards where he was awarded the righteously deserved accolade Most Influential CEO of the Year 2018 – Belgium. Taking time out of his busy schedule, Alexander dives into great detail about two companies: TopSportslab and Juran Institute.

TopSportsLab aims to optimise the long and short term physical preparedness of athletes through workload management, injury prevention and prediction. Some of the key customers that Alexander has worked with include UEFA, FIFA, Belgian field hockey team, Saudi National Football team, and clubs.

Juran Institute, is the world’s leading consultancy in Quality Management. From 1994-2011, Alexander ran the European office where the firm served all Oil & Gas majors.

Beginning the interview, we take a closer look at the firm’s approach when undertaking a new client. Alexander is keen to highlight how both TopSportsLab and Juran Institute ensure that the clients that they worked alongside received the best possible outcome.

“TopSportsLab makes sure that the client acquires and gets trained in using the latest monitoring devices e.g. GPS and heart rate systems. These are used to continually track the physical efforts of the athlete. We advise them to use either StatSports or Catapult GPS trackers. More importantly, we work with their local physical coaches to make sure he reports all statistics on trainings, games, physical test, rehab, injuries, wellness (daily) questionnaires etc. This will allow them to eventually assess ‘where’ and ‘when’ an athlete might get injured and then subsequently act with preventative measures.

“As for Juran Institute, for the annual global benchmarking programs, a long list of metrics was gathered for each participating oil/gas asset (i.e. an oil or gas installation could be a processing factory, platform, pipeline, gas network etc). This allowed Juran to quantify and qualify the strengths and weaknesses for each asset. Learning events were organised to transfer the knowledge of the best practitioners to the other participants. The focus for the clients lies in ‘improvement’, therefore they participated every year and their improvements were measured in all key business processes.”

When discussing what differentiates both TopSportsLab and Juran Institute from their competitors, Alexander focuses on one key point – knowledge.

“For both companies KNOWLEDGE was being sold. Therefore, it was key to stay ahead of the competition. We did this in both companies through 1) Hiring the best people in the field, 2) Attracting high-end customers, and 3) Ensuring innovation.”

Bringing the interview to a close, Alexander reflects on the current state of the industry, noting on the challenges that are affecting it.

“For TopSportsLab the threats are enormous as the technology progresses continually at a very rapid pace. Moreover, the sports industry has reported double-digit growth for many consecutive years now. This attracts new comers. It also attracts the big players who throw in much bigger budgets. However, given the customers’ search for an all-encompassing solution software, an exit and/or partnering with a global player is the only long-term alternative for a functional expert such as TopSportsLab.”

Moving forward, Alexander signs off by envisioning what the future holds for the firm him as a CEO. By adapting and adopting best practices demonstrated in other industries, he wants to make a difference in the world of sports.

“My next objective is to own a professional football club. Football has become a global business. Most clubs are loss-making. Therefore, there are numerous clubs for sale. The improvement potential is huge, short termism is the rule and not the exception, there is a scarcity of organisational and managerial talent and there are no controls in place for business processes. The focus is invariably on the first team, youth teams is (often) another organisation. We will re-introduce value-chain thinking starting from the youth team. Install a best-in-class youth academy. Prepare individual youth players for the first team. Minimise incoming transfers, maximise outgoing transfers. Moreover, we will introduce the latest techniques to fill the stadium using top-notch social media advertising, loyalty systems, stadium technology etc.” Another high growth area is women football. It requires a paradigm shift by a macho, testosterone driven industry.  


Name: Alexander Janssen

Web Address: [email protected]

Telephone: 31653408976

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