Sir Frank Seeley, of Seeley International fame, has always been an inspiration to me and my students at the MBA School of MBA Credentials. And my respect deepened enormously after working closely the the insightful leader when he engaged me to address the Seeley International VIP conference on Hamilton Island recently.
While there are many other reasons for my admiration of Sir Frank and Seeley Interntional, here are a couple.
Firstly, his magnificent company, Seeley International, is a poster child when it comes to companies having firm, economic foundations. And this is largely due to Sir Frank taking his fiduciary responsibilities seriously, so much so, he doesn’t only know how many dollars the company has, he knows each one of them by name.
Secondly, when it comes to the planet, it’s hard to fault Seeley International in relation to environmental sustainability. Not only does its air coolers use a mere tenth of the power of air conditioners, its newest technology is on a course to making refrigerative air conditioning a relic of the past.
Talking of relics of the past, one can state quite firmly that such a term represents the complete antithesis of Sir Frank; he is neither a relic nor of the past. In fact, he is dynamic and always focussed on the future.
But these are obvious observations to make about a man of Sir Frank’s stature.
Understanding Sir Frank Seeley with MBA Thinking
On this occasion of his 80th birthday, I thought I’d use some MBA Thinking to unearth some deeper insights into this man, through his products.
You see, there is a very blurry line between Sir Frank, the man, and Seeley International, the products: they are one and the same.
Ergo, to read descriptions of his products is to read descriptions of the man. Let me share my insights.
Sir Frank in relation to the Braemar Superstealth
For example, let us take Seeley International’s Braemar Superstealth evaporative air conditioner.
It’s described as “super quiet and super cool”.
You only need to mingle with Sir Frank for a few moments to know that that is him to a tee. He’s studious and reflective and his anecdotes are always delivered with a kind of poise and timing one expects from the coolest and most accomplished jazz masters.
The super stealth also boasts “user-friendly tech”.
This is also Sir Frank.
He has engineering in his DNA but he can still slow down and explain technology in very user-friendly and entertaining ways. He is, indeed, a “user-friendly tech!”
And this series is also described as boasting “some serious hardware”.
At this point, the comparisons risk becoming not only personal, but speculative. This is because I have never been intimate enough with Sir Frank to have inspected his hardware. Nor have I the effrontery to ask Lady Kathy about it!
Suffice to say, he must be constructed of very sturdy stuff because, just like the millions of units bearing his name that continue whirring away for decades, bringing relief and comfort to many of us in boardrooms and bedrooms, so, too, must Sir Frank, we assume.
Although I only have first hand experience of Sir Frank’s constancy in the boardroom, for the record!
Sir Frank in relation to the Breezair Extraordinaire®
The further I looked through the product ranges, the deeper I saw the connections between Sir Frank and his products, but I will finish with the words of the judges from the Good Design Awards, where the Breezair Extraordinaire® recently won a Gold Accolade.
This judging panel’s comment could equally apply to Sir Frank:
“A well thought out solution with appropriate aesthetics resulting in a neatly integrated solution.”
Happy birthday, Sir Frank, and we’re proud to not only know you, but to know that you are Australian-designed and Australian-made, even if you are Kathy-owned.