don hales


rom early on in Don’s career and throughout his time in the competitive world of Financial Services, he instinctively knew the value of good customer service and soon established himself as a leading seller in Legal & General.

It wasn’t long before Abbey Life headhunted him to work alongside their leading salespeople, developing business with high net worth customers. When the principal directors of Abbey Life (including the now Sir Mark Weinberg and Lords Joffe and Lipworth) left to form a new company, they invited Don to head up the Bonds Department, where he became a key member of the management team and saw Hambro (now Zurich Life) become a major player in the market. By 1979, Don and four colleagues formed their own company which was later sold to The Sun Life Group.

His first role in this new company was Marketing Director, with responsibility for developing the sales force. By 1984, the company had reached 500 sellers, with the highest average earnings and best retention rates in the industry for both business and sales force. By 1988 he became Managing Director before leaving in 1990 to take on role of a business advisor and management consultant to clients such as Scottish Widows, Black Horse Life and a traded endowment company, Policy Portfolio.

In 1997, Don linked with Quest Media as their Deputy Managing Director, to launch the National Sales Awards and followed three years later with the National Customer Service Awards. When Quest Media was sold in 2007, Don had helped the company grow into one of Europe’s largest award organisers as well as developing an exciting range of business relationship magazines and conference programmes.

To date, Don has addressed audiences in 18 different countries and contributed hundreds of articles to dozens of publications in recent years and has close ties with the Institute of Customer Service and the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals, as well as most of the leading academics, trainers and consultants working in the customer focus profession. His long awaited first book: “WOW! That’s What I Call Service”, was published in 2007.