Think Adding Value – Introducing Douglas, our new Recruitment Director!

There is a new Recruitment Director on the block here at Think Global Recruitment. Douglas McDonald is a recruitment specialist who brings with him a wealth of international experience stretching from the Middle East to the APAC region! We recently caught up with the recruitment genie to find out more about him and his vision for the future.


So which countries have you lived and worked in?

When I was twenty-one years old I went to live in Palestine teaching with the Church of Scotland… which was an eye opening experience! I have also worked in Malaysia where I got my first overseas job in recruitment. I spent ten years working in Asia Pacific (APAC), with a year in Beijing and four years in Indonesia. During this time I also managed operations out of Singapore and Hong Kong with trips back and forth to these locations working with some of the biggest recruiters in the continent!

How did you first get into recruitment?

I fell into recruitment through a temporary contact I had at the time with McColl Associates. They offered me a job, I accepted the role and quickly came to realisation that recruitment held a lot of interest that I enjoyed from previous jobs all wrapped up in one.

What other roles have you had experience in?

I have previously worked as a Project Change Manager at EY and an Account Manager at State Street Investment Bank (UK).  Other roles I have held have included teaching, being a College & Conference Manager plus many different company directorships and managerial roles. I learnt my recruitment craft in Asia, they also gave me exposure working with senior leadership and Executive Search. My experience across the sector has been diverse, however, my speciality has become more diluted due to diverse team management. My focus has been around new business start-ups and business transformation.

What inspired you to move abroad to work?

Moving abroad was never on my mind and definitely wasn’t planned. When I finished with EY, I stumbled upon a job based in Malaysia and decided it would be an excellent opportunity for me and my family and here I am only returning to Scotland ten years later!

How do you think living and working abroad has benefitted your career?

My time abroad made me who I am today. Living in so many different cities has changed my viewpoint on life. Living and working abroad allows you to see who you are as an individual and how you cope with things. Once you understand different cultures it is much easier to work on an international basis.

How did you find moving back to the UK after so many years abroad?malaysia

It was a pretty easy transition moving back to the UK. Once you have had experience living in a different country it is less traumatic moving from one place to another. I came back to Scotland because of my family. Scotland will always be home. The main challenge coming back was the cold weather!

What were you doing before you joined the team at Think Global Recruitment?

I was working at MRI group improving performance systems. My key task was to set up a separate entity which I created from ground zero. I did have the option to stay at the company, however, I felt it was time to come back to the UK. My role at Think Global Recruitment means that I can still work on an international basis and can utilise my knowledge and skills.

So you have been here for over a month now, what has been your impression of Think Global Recruitment thus far?

I have seen a lot of really good stuff here so far. We have a great team with great potential. We have excellent technology, brilliant location and fantastic structure in support and marketing. We have a highly professional and reputable brand, the people are really friendly, hardworking and passionate. For me it is all about the people, we have a very diverse team! I believe that if your people are right then your business will be right. We have a really strong foundation here to build upon to take the business to the next level.


Looking forward, what is your vision for the company?

My main aim is to provide the tools, support, training, coaching, and development to be successful. What that means for one person is completely different for the next. Therefore it is fundamental to understand your colleague’s needs in order to achieve success.  I want to look at how we can take the business forward and how we can add more value become even better at what we do!

How do you think the international accountancy and finance sector is doing in this period of uncertainty?

There is always an uncertain lead up to times like this, however, it is not all doom and gloom. Regardless of what happens, there are always opportunities. The key is to prepare, be close to your clients, and ask questions. You may have to diversify to counteract and negate scenarios but if something does happen, adapt how you work and always have a contingency plan!

We would like to thank Douglas for the time taken for this interview. All the team here at Think Global Recruitment are very excited to have him on board!