Daniel Taylor MBE is the founder of MDC Group, an award-winning office design agency with over 20 years of experience in designing truly inspiring workplaces for some of the world’s leading brands. The company takes a ‘cradle to grave’ approach to design and works with clients of all sizes and at different stages of their business. It’s therefore no surprise that MDC Group boasts an impressive client list that includes Facebook, Dolby, Harley Davison and JN Bank –The first Jamaican cashless bank to operate in the UK. Some of MDC’s award-winning projects include the South-Central ambulance call centre, which was awarded a silver award by the Home office.
Over the years the company has prided itself in creating modern working environments that encourage productivity, while providing a level of comfort that one would expect when at home.
“When I started the business, I wanted to create a legacy business, not a lifestyle business” Daniel Taylor explains.
With such an upstanding successful business, I couldn’t help but wonder when and how it all started for this entrepreneur.
Daniel started his design career at Westinghouse, currently known as TECO-Westinghouse and then moved on to Allsteel, a subsidiary of BTR Group. While at Allsteel, Daniel followed his mentor as he moved up in the organisation to the positions of CEO for Europe and Middle East, a role that required a lot of travel. It took him to places like Czechoslovakia (before it became known as Czech Republic), Qatar and Moscow to name a few.However, travelling for work wasn’t as easy, flexible and sexy as it is nowadays. “when I used to travel for work, I used to take a suitcase full of gadgets in order to stay connected. For example, I had a laptop, modem, satellite phone and so the whole process became exhausting”, Daniel remembered.
When Allsteel was taken over by another company, Daniel saw this as an opportunity to build the legacy he’d always dreamt of. “I am an unusual designer in that I am a very creative person but I am also financially driven and always wanted to own and run my own business”, Daniel explained.
With a degree in products for commercial offices and a successful career at globally recognised companies, he had built the contact list and expertise to start MDC Group. His talent of being able to articulate an interior design project has continued to win clients over the years.
“I always look at my clients as my friends, because people buy from people” – Because of this analogy, Daniel was able to start the business with a few clients he’d worked for on previous projects. However, after a number of successful months, through the help of his accountant, he realised that his business was reliant on two customers. This was a high risk in an industry that can easily be impacted, especially by economic downturns.
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As such, he decided to re-invest in the business and to make it a family business, because “I had identified earlier on that the UK government was not going to create a provision for me during retirement. Therefore, I had to make that provision for me and my wife (of 30years).”
Today, MDC-group is flying the flag for gender representation at board level, with 3 out 5 of its executive board members being black women. “I wanted to work with family because no one has my back like my family does. It just happens that my family is predominantly female”.” When you work with people who are committed to the cause, especially black women, who are strong mentally and physically, they think more methodically and give you a clearer direction, which helps me a lot in the business”.
Unlike most businesses, the Corona Virus Pandemic hasn’t slowed MDC- Group down. The business was “in a very strong financial position before it happened”. The company continued to win contracts during the period and has re-branded its self as a one stop shop for all property development needs required. Therefore, it has increased its offerings to include design, construction development and interior design.
Some of MDC’s projects to look out for in 2021 include the Dartford hill hub by Rehoboth, who I interviewed in this article (insert link here) and a high design gym with a fight club theme (i.e., catering for sports such as Jiu Jitsu, kick boxing). The Gym is to be placed in a high-density area where It will be used by the surrounding local community.
If you are involved in the construction or property development business, make sure to reach out MDC Group.