LDC Top 50 2022
Straight out of university, Adam Stroud took on a temp job in the factory of Paxton, a Brighton-based technology firm which designs and manufactures security solutions for buildings.
In 2012, he became CEO and has overseen the company’s expansion into international markets and new products, such as video surveillance systems. The company now exports to over 60 countries and is working with Brighton and Hove City Council to create a private technology park in the region. “It was a small company when I joined and I made it my business to learn everything,” he says. “Our goal is to become one of the world’s great technology companies.”
Complacency is the enemy. It’s something that we guard against. Mentally, we start from zero every year.”
Why did you join Paxton?
Fresh out of studying mechanical engineering at the University of Brighton, I started working in the factory at Paxton, thinking I’d be there for a couple of months to tide me over until I found a permanent job. I went from being a bit lazy to being completely inspired. It was a small company of about 20 people back then and I made it my business to learn everything.
What’s your biggest leadership lesson?
Complacency is the enemy. It’s something that we guard against. Mentally, we start from zero every year. We’re always our own harshest critics in terms of the quality of our products. I spend 95pc of my time concentrating on the things that we can do better and only 5pc of my time thinking about the things we’ve done well.
What motivates you?
When I was growing up, my father was studying for a degree in computer science so we always had computers at home. I did a lot of programming on my Commodore 64, and was really taken with this machine that provided so much potential to create. I love technology and get a lot of satisfaction from seeing ideas come to fruition in the form of a new product or feature. To me, that’s like Christmas Day morning.