Entrepreneurs Forever 2015 | Version française

Carole Dupessey

Chairman of the Dupessey Group

She left the Bar to ensure the continuation of the family transport company.

Carole Dupessey first of all fulfilled her teenage dream of becoming a lawyer, before joining the family transport company - pushed by loyalty - and then making it grow - driven by her taste for the human scale and for strategy.

She was sworn in 1987 at the Bar in Lyon, and started a career in commercial and criminal law. But in 1992, her father pleaded a noble cause to her: taking over his company. « I had to think about it, because I had no particular link with the company, but I thought it would have been a pity to sell it. »
She left the Bar in 1993 and discovered, as Vice-General Manager, the life of a SME with a staff of 120. « Even though I was taking care of issues as varied as insurance, legal aspects, and human resources, I had to get used to being fixed in an office, which was totally different to the way I spent my days as a lawyer. »
It also took her some time to find the right work posture. « People saw me as a lawyer rather than the boss's daughter; they would come and consult me about their divorce! And during my first interview for a disciplinary measure, I found myself crying along with the driver! »

Conscious meditation helps me in my role as Head of Company. I have the power, or the duty, to create freedom around me. I think a lot about the best way of empowering people and giving them freedom. It is always a source of happiness to me when my collaborators freely express their ideas and their talents.

In 2000 she summonsed herself to a new assignment, committing the company to sustainable development, beginning with an Iso 9001 certification. « It was a good way to get to know all the different departments of the company. » 
In 2007, wanting to know more about sales and finance, she followed EMLYON’s AMP/CPA programme. « That training was really a founding element for me in many ways. » So then she was ready, in 2008, to take over from the Chairman who was about to retire.
But the transport sector was bearing the brunt of the economic crisis, sweeping the company towards four consecutive years of financial loss. « The economic context forced us to accelerate change. »

Carole Dupessey defended her strategy: setting up a Management Committee and appointing Heads of Departments, reinforcing links with the clients, diversifying towards logistics services, targeting actions for drivers... « Even in times of difficulties, I never wanted to sacrifice the long-term vision. I worked with advisers; it's difficult to innovate all by yourself. And I communicated a lot. »

She resolutely continued her work on sustainable development, rebalanced the books, and, in 2012, won the Award ‘’Transporter of the Year’’.
Her conclusions can be stated in a few words: « This wonderful adventure shows that you can always see the end of the tunnel when you dare to move forward, and when you have the right people around you. »

For three years now, the evidence has been mounting, of a development as quick as a summary procedure: with the creation of a freighting service, a unit specialised in part load transport, subsidiaries in Spain and in Italy, etc. the Dupessey group has reached sales of € 70 million, with a staff of 350.

During the growth process, Carole Dupessey has never compromised her basic principles of action: strategic thinking and business plans, commitment with both clients and suppliers, delegation and training, respecting your word and long-term relationships. « I love seeing the company advancing, the information being circulated, and people having pleasure in working for us and with us.  »

Her proceedings speak for themselves: in her free time she teaches students at the School about sustainable development and innovation, campaigns within her trade association, sits on the Trade Court of Annecy and manages to feel serene thanks to long trips and meditation…

EM Lyon: AMP/CPA 2007
Translation : Carole Bausor, ILTC
Date de parution : 01/06/15