Alan O’Neill

Revitalised 'Sleeping Giant' Selfridges

Alan O’Neil is an internationally-renowned business leader and consultant. With experience across various industries, from retail to hospitality, tourism to IT services, he is one of the most knowledgeable and experienced executives in the UK.

With over 30 years of board room experience, working with blue-chip corporations, Alan has enjoyed success at all levels. Perhaps most memorably, Alan was able to help turn around the fortunes of the retail giant, Selfridges.

An ever changing retail industry that faced significant disruption saw Selfridges in need of a major makeover in 2001. Alan was appointed lead consultant, charged with making Selfridges a big player online, as well as in store.

His customer-centric strategies paved the way for an impressive turnaround from the department store, which after Alan’s expertise could call itself ‘the best department store in the world’ – a title that was bestowed on them by peers for three consecutive years during Alan’s time with the company.

Alan’s change management strategy with Selfridges was comprehensive, and within a short time frame he was able to change the culture of the company, giving it a modern image and reputation for excellent customer service.

It is not only Selfridges though that earned Alan a reputation for being an astute leader in the art of change management. He also enjoyed success with brands that include AIB Bank, Chevron, Intel, Nissan, Harrods and Vodafone, in companies across a wide range of industries.

For any business looking to update their strategy and stay in touch with the modern consumer, Alan is ideal. His knowledge of marketing, branding and indeed the ins and outs of business has seen him sit on the boards of major companies, helping to drive change from front to back.

A business doesn’t need to be heading off course for a speech from Alan to be of benefit. As a thought leader, ‘The Change Agent’ is able to simply help stack the building blocks of a business, pushing the boundaries of success.

Corporate audiences from Europe to the Middle East, the US to the UK have all benefited from Alan’s speeches which not only offer an impressive level of detail relating to any and all areas of business, but also offer inspiration, as he focuses on topics such as peak performance and determination.

Alan has featured at events for DVLA, Landbell Germany, 3D-Dassault Paris, National Housing Fed, EDF Energy, Jardines Motors Milton Keynes, GAM Investment Managers, Toyota Distributors and Dealers, Swedbank Customer Conference, Ei Pubs, EU Lotteries, Selfridges, Fortnum & Mason, Ann Summers and UPS.

To book Alan O’Neill as the retail speaker for your corporate event, function or conference, simply contact the Champions Speakers agency by emailing or by calling a booking agent directly on 0207 1010 553.

When at corporate events, Alan is known to cover the following topics

  • Dare to Change – For all sorts of reasons such as mergers, acquisitions, globalisation, competition, Brexit and other political challenges – more and more organisations want to better understand how to cope with ‘change’ and what it means for their culture. Every single organisation is going through some change. And instead of keynotes on leadership or innovation, change is all-embracing.
  • Premium is the New Black – Alan’s debut book has prompted organisations to reconsider how they put the customer at the heart of all decision making. After all, differentiating on product alone doesn’t cut it anymore. In almost all industries they know that customer experience is the new competitive battleground.
  • The Retail Apocalypse and Fake News – Retail is the one sector that is experiencing more disruption than any other. Although e-commerce is growing, it does not herald the demise of bricks and mortar retailers. It’s simply ‘Darwin-ism’ at work – bad retailers are closing. The survivors of the future are those that adapt their retail model to a new world. (This particular keynote is not just for retailers – as brand owners also have a vested interest)

I am proud to say that I have witnessed Alan delivering outstanding seminars, presentations and small group development sessions and rarely have I experienced such a captivating leader and presenter. He has the unique talent of holding his audience in the palm of his hand and his extensive retail knowledge and experience is second to none. – Alshaya Group