10 MINUTES WITH: Guy Cherry, the Managing Director of GPT Waste Management

How did you get into the Waste Management Industry?

I joined my father in 1990 in the scrap tyre market place; the focus being to clear garages up and down the country of old tyres and extract a value from any that could be reused either as casings for remoulding or part worn tyres for countries whose access to remoulds or new tyres was limited.

How has the waste industry evolved over the years?

Through the ongoing implementation of new legislation and environmental policy, as well as further advances in both science and technology, the waste management sector has continued to evolve and at a pace. Any historical “gaps” in handling and treatment are all but obsolete; as a business, we are constantly reviewing what fresh thinking is being considered in order to understand how we can best mobilise to our clients and improve what we do for them.

How have you & your team dealt with Covid-19?

It’s been an challenging period for the country and the world; as a business, we took the decision very early on to understand what we could do and how we could support any of our clients directly or indirectly affected; under Key Worker Status, we have been able to offer business continuity to all of our Healthcare and Defence clients and at the same time supporting other sectors when they went into and have subsequently started to come out of lockdown.

What is the most important step businesses should take in terms of waste management?

Coming out of Covid19 I believe a number of companies will take the opportunity to review their cost base right across their business’s; we echo this and feel it is a good time to revisit waste procedures and costs and are firmly available to support any review process a company wants to undertake.

What are your thoughts on Energy from Waste?

I feel it provides a great opportunity to provide a sustainable alternative to landfill for waste that can be used to provide energy.  So many feedstock products to power stations, such as coal and pet coke, cost the facility money; and yet waste still incurs a disposal fee; Why? What better opportunity to clear the decks of waste and provide a long-term feedstock that reduces the impact on the mining of natural resources.

If you could provide businesses with once piece of advice in terms of waste, what would it be?

Regularly review and benchmark your processes and costs. Ours is an ever-evolving market with plenty of new legislation and opportunity to guide and enhance current approaches.

What advice would you have for someone joining the waste industry now?

It’s a great career path and still very much in its infancy as it comes to terms with environmental drivers and general opinion; it continues to offer variety with such a broad reach across commerce and society and with great opportunities to train and develop.

What do you do to ensure your team remain enthusiastic?

Operating in such a dynamic industry allows us to continually look at roles and responsibilities in the business; the team has always embraced opportunity to develop and with that comes fresh challenges. We also enjoy working alongside several dynamic clients and suppliers in their specific fields; providing the opportunity to visit them and their facilities. All these areas help enormously in keeping the team motivated and enthusiastic.

What are your business goals for 2020/21?

To continue to develop as a business with a focus on enhancing our depth of knowledge as well as our processes and procedures allowing us to enhance our commercial offer.

A bit of fun: What is your favourite meal?

Anything my family cooks.

For more information on what GPT visit our website at www.gptwaste.com or call us on 0844 854 5000.