Name and role: Emma Robinson, Founder and Managing Director

Company: Red Diamond Executive Headhunters

Sector: Executive headhunting

Describe what your business does?

We’re a global executive headhunting company operating from Huddersfield, with a worldwide reach and specific expertise of the Middle East. Offering a consistently creative, personal and proven approach has put our company on the map when it comes to executive headhunting – we ultimately find the professionals others can’t, no matter how rare, specialist, or niche the requirements.

How many staff do you employ?

We have a strong, diverse team of six, made up of researchers, headhunters and support staff – plus four consultants. Our team approach differs from stereotypical, traditional executive search processes and we all take great pride in applying a fresh perspective, assuming nothing, getting to the heart of each brief to ensure the right candidate is placed for every role.

What does your role entail?

I manage the running of Red Diamond Executive Headhunters – from strategy through to operations. I am a hands-on leader, but I am also responsible for headhunting with my own portfolio of clients. The roles I typically recruit for include Managing Directors, Sales Directors, HR Directors, Operations Directors and Non-Exec Directors. I often place a Managing Director within a company, then help to build a team around this person.

What attracted you to start/operate your business in Huddersfield?

After several years of being based in the Middle East, my husband Simon and I moved back to the UK when we started our family. Huddersfield is home. It’s where our extended family live and having both had lovely blessed childhoods here, we wanted the same for our children. As a global executive headhunter, I could do my job from the moon – a good internet connection and a phone is imperative, the rest is a bonus. The fact that Huddersfield is close to two major motorway links, less than an hour to Manchester airport and houses a thriving business community makes our job that little bit easier.

Name some of your biggest business achievements:

I’ve placed over 200 people into executive positions across the globe, many of them involving a full family relocation. Over half of these positions include talent lost from the UK to other countries, that myself and my team have brought back.

One of my highlights is placing an entire management team into a business which later floated. The same management team are in place today and this business now turns over 20 times more than it did when we started. Good people really do make a difference.

What advice would you give to someone looking to set up or relocate their business in Huddersfield?

One of the best things about Huddersfield is that it’s within easy reach of the vibrant cities of Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds – all three are commutable within an hour and it’s easily achievable to rent a great office (with parking!) at a reasonable price. The business community in Huddersfield is thriving, with regular networking events on offer and a constant stream of positive news stories from businesses celebrating success.

What are your hopes for Huddersfield 10 years from now (2030)?

I predict a revival of the manufacturing industry, specifically textiles. If the business community dares to take some risks, our rich heritage could come back.

I’d also love to see more investment in the high street, with greater support for retailers. I think a good clean-up operation in Huddersfield town centre would be beneficial to all. I have such fond memories of shopping when I was younger in a vibrant and busy town centre. It would be great to see that again.

On a personal level, what do you love most about the town?

Where I live – Holmfirth! It’s such a beautiful place with so much community activity going on. I can also easily be in Leeds, Manchester or Sheffield fairly quickly when I crave some city action!

Where is your favourite place to eat/drink in Huddersfield?

I’m a foodie, so could give you an entire list… my favourite Indian is Laxmi (Berry Brow), date night Mezze (Holmfirth), girls night out The Manor House (Lindley), Sunday Lunch – Pickled Pheasant (Holmbridge), special occasion – Three Acres.

Are there any recommendations or local knowledge you’d like to share with a visitor?

The little villages within Huddersfield have some lovely bars, restaurants and entertainment venues for both kids and adults – places like Holmfirth, Denby Dale, Honley, Meltham, Lindley etc still have thriving high streets. There are also some really great places to walk and cycle, usually with a great country pub or two to stop off at on the way.

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