We caught up with Rovers' CEO Steve Waggott following his recent visit to India to meet with the club's Owners.
After a series of ‘positive’ meetings, the Chief Executive stressed the importance of stability going forward and stated that the Owners were delighted with the promotion, supportive of the Board’s proposals for next season and eager to build on the feel-good factor currently surrounding the club.
Scroll down to read the first part of the Q&A...
Steve, you have recently returned from a trip to India to meet with the club’s Owners, what was the purpose of the trip and how did it go?
“The purpose of the trip was to spend five days with the Owners, going through the entire budget proposal that we had put forward for the coming season.
“There was a delegation of four of us from the club, Tony Mowbray, myself, Mike Cheston, the Finance Director and Ian Silvester, the Club Secretary, along with Suhail, who is the Owners’ representative at the club.
“We flew across to Pune in India and spent three long, hard-working days going through all the budget lines, especially with a focus being on the first team, which is of major interest to the supporters.
“And that was really positive.”
How beneficial was it to have those meetings face-to-face?
“It’s key. It’s okay doing conference calls and emails, but there’s nothing like sitting in a room for three or four hours at a time going through budget lines and explaining why we’re asking for certain things and putting forward all the different rationales and proposals.
“It’s absolutely key that it’s done face-to-face so the Owners can look us in the eye and we can look back at them and we can say ‘this is the aim for us, are you supportive of what we’re trying to do?’ and the answer that was coming back was ‘yes, we’re very supportive, we’re delighted with the promotion and we want to build on the positivity’.
“Wanting stability at the club was a major theme. We’re going to continue to grow, not a boom or bust model, but sensible growth and have a competitive squad in the Championship this season.”
After the past few seasons, how important is that stability going forward?
“I think it’s key. If you look at lots of clubs who tend to go into freefall and tend to go into distressed times across football, you see a turnover of first team managers and coaches, you see executives come and go, directors changing on the Board, and every time there’s a change there’s a change of footballers, personnel, staff, it’s quite unsettling.
“You then try and get into a routine and we all know that it’s a results-driven industry. If results go wrong, let’s change again and it all goes around in circles and there’s no forward momentum.
“You’re either standing still or it’s a backwards step at times. So it’s absolutely key that the club gets stability at this stage.
“Tony and the team had a fantastic season last year, as we all know, and we now have to build on that positivity, get the supporters behind the club and see where we end up next season, which is going to be an exciting campaign for everyone.”