Don’t tell James Mansfield that he can’t do something. The Birmingham-area native and former marine geography student once got let go from a position early in his career with the words: “Sales just might not be right for you.” A competitor from an early age — a national-level athlete in hockey and clay shooting while at school — James is not a fan of failure, but he knows that it’s sometimes required to learn, develop and ultimately succeed. As a sales leader and chief revenue officer, Fastmarkets, he embraces a culture of development and transformation.
“I have always known that I wanted to be a leader from a young age but my perception of what a good leader is has changed considerably. As a young leader it’s hard to break away from the desire to be liked but you soon realize that leadership is about balancing that empathy and understanding with helping people take accountability and contribute to their own development.”
At the age of 24, James was appointed sales director at Fastmarkets by its former CEO. “He judged me on my outcomes and potential, not my age or tenure. These are values I strive to reflect within my own leadership today,” James says. In the years since, James has found mentors and leaders that continued that trust and helped him learn the hard truths of senior leadership and got him ready for that step up. He feels an obligation to do the same for other potential leaders across the business.
James’s passion for business and his instinct for developing people’s talent come from his parents, a serial entrepreneur and art teacher, respectively. His experience competing internationally from the age of 14 taught him to prepare for success by breaking it down into bite-sized tasks and goals. This method underpins his approach at Fastmarkets. Obsessed with the need for strategic alignment between a company’s vision, rules, objectives, and actions, James believes that it’s vital that every individual within Fastmarkets understands their direct contribution to the strategic vision.
James has an Executive MBA with distinction from the Warwick Business School. He started his career at Informa as an individual contributor before moving to Fastmarkets. While at Fastmarkets at Euromoney, James ran sales functions before forming the Operations Team under Fastmarkets CFOO, Toby Burton. Moving back to sales in April 2021, James was named chief revenue officer.