Craig Haidley
National Sales Manager
Glass and Stone

Were it not for a devastating rugby injury suffered as a teenager, our Stone and Glass expert might never have stepped into the world of high-end machinery. Born into a large, athletic family, Craig was always out on the field, playing games. A natural knack for leadership and teamwork would prove to be extremely valuable later in life, when fields of green grass were traded in for factory floors.

“Being part of a team, you have to play as part of the team – most importantly, when you’re the leader of the team.”

Before the injury, Craig had been the Captain of Australia’s Junior Rugby representation, headed for professional status. Luckily, his coach happened to have connections in the Glass industry and arranged to get him a job. While lifting heavy things was out of the question, Craig was still getting his hands dirty, learning the Glass trade Inside and out. Production processes had his attention fully captured, steering him towards a series of trade qualifications that culminated in a Diploma of Process Engineering.

“Process Engineering became a bit of an obsession. I came to realise that just about every aspect of life can be made more efficient than it was yesterday.”

In tandem with tertiary studies, the soon-to-be TAFE graduate had worked his way up to a sales representative role. The firm’s aluminium supplier noticed and invited him to interview for a machinery sales company. Two weeks later, Craig made his debut in the machinery sales world, determined to do more than just put pen to paper.

“To be honest, I wasn’t that fond of selling; going through the process to get a customer to put his name on the contract. Not as much as taking a customer’s problem, and finding a solution; getting him more money for the product he was making.”

With a well-trained eye, the Sydney-born salesman saw that even the minutest change could make a major impact on operations. Streamlining factory flow became his primary focus, helping generate greater revenue for clients. Numbers and technology played a big part in the work – but there was something greater behind them.

“I think it’s important to understand people. Not just in my area – you have to understand a person’s business and how they do things; their professional life – but also understand who they are.”

Keen observation skills have always been one of Craig’s greatest attributes. Alongside making genuine connections with clients, he began analysing production data to amplify output and minimise long-term costs. Every new case was a challenge that he enjoyed taking on. Decades later, he’s still seeing opportunities for improvement.

“I was watching glass and stone going through the factory in a very inefficient way before I looked at the data and told people look, there’s a better, more profitable way to do this.”

After several years of leading a team at his former workplace, the desire to branch out and progress stirred. That desire was fulfilled when Craig crossed paths with our Managing Director, Pierre Sullivan a short while later. Pierre and his former Unimac partner had worked with of Craig several years earlier, and decided to see if he’d be a good fit for the team. Timing turned out to be a barrier – but Pierre was willing to wait.

Three years later, Craig signed a new contract, in which he found plenty of room for pursuing industry projects while helping new and existing customers up their game. Over time, a synergistic working relationship formed between our founder and the ex-rugby player, who share the same passion for authentic, value-focused service that is synonymous with Innovync.

“We’ve got a very tight-knit team and a very personal way of connecting with the customer. Automatically, they say that’s different from connecting to the status quo. If I’m speaking specifically to the customer about service, and you can call the head of the company and get an answer from a guy who’s got a technical background – and that’s a very personal relationship between machine and user – then that’s setting up a completely different interaction that manufacturers appreciate.”

Feel free to book a meeting or email Craig directly to experience his expertise first-hand. He’s always up for a challenge!