Rob Morley had a creeping suspicion that he and his team were walking in the wrong direction. Deep in the New Brunswick woods, Rob was on his first mission as a volunteer with the Miramichi Ground Search and Rescue Team (GSAR), which had been called out to search for a missing man. The team’s GPS had stopped working earlier as they walked through the thick and tangled woods, off-trail and, Rob believed, off-course. He spoke up, and got the team going in a different direction. Rob was soon leading his team out of the forest.
Rob’s experience on GSAR threads together various elements of his life: He’s a leader, a volunteer and a man with an eye for detail, head for analysis and a fortitude hardened by eight years in the British Army, where he saw action helping secure the beachheads during the Falklands War.
He brings that experience and history to SYKES, where he was just promoted to director of area operations for Canada, helping manage the region’s operations and finances. In addition to his new duties, Rob also continues his responsibilities as site director for the Miramichi call center.
Rob moved to Canada with his wife, who is Canadian. He began his career there with UPS. “Then we had kids,” Rob says, “and we decided to move back to the United Kingdom so my kids could get a bit of the British culture.”
Back in the U.K., he worked as a project manager and opened a new international hub for Parcelforce Worldwide. Rob says it was one of the most stressful jobs he ever had. “I used to sit down and say to myself, ‘look, I’ve been through conflicts. I’ve been through wars. If I can get through that, I can get through this.’”
While the project was a success Rob decided he would welcome an opportunity to move on if something would come his way. And then he got a call from a former subordinate from Canada.
“This fellow was two levels below me at UPS. He was a real ‘bull in a china shop,’ always wanting to do really well but just blustering through it. And I gave him some advice when I left, telling him he had burned too many bridges and that he needed to make a fresh start if he wanted to get on in life.”
Rob’s former subordinate took his advice, and now, five years later, he was calling Rob – to offer him a job to lead a new call center in New Brunswick.
Rob accepted, and made the move back to Canada. “I started to learn all the ins and outs of the call center. And it was right up my alley.” Rob never looked back. In 2013 he moved to SYKES, taking on the site director role in Miramichi.
One of Rob’s priorities was getting the site more visible and involved in the local community. He saw his opportunity with the GSAR. “Ground search and rescue is helping small kids, older people, anyone who gets lost.” The idea appealed to Rob, and SYKES provided a sponsorship, which has already helped the GSAR purchase a new mobile command center.
Rob is such a believer in their SAR team that he joined as a volunteer, responding to calls for help at any time or day or night when he’s able (recently leaving his vacation to participate in a mission). With missions and training, Rob and the other volunteers put in 200 hours per year.
Whether by helping locate missing hikers, guiding his team out of the woods, assisting site leaders and account managers in financial decisions, or by giving colleagues career-changing advice, Rob helps people find their way. But for himself, Rob is happy where he’s at.
“At SYKES, I feel valued. I feel I have the freedom to be entrepreneurial. It’s a very dynamic job; probably one of the most enjoyable I’ve ever had.”