5 minutes with Tim Williams

Tim Williams, Category Manager for Office Products Depot NZ, under the spotlight.


Describe what you do in less than 20 words.

Category Manager for OPD Group New Zealand, responsible for the selection of products and negotiating terms of trade with suppliers.

What was your first full-time job? 

Sales Analyst for an ice cream company.

If you weren’t doing your present job, what would you like to be doing? 

I’d like to be a sports radio broadcaster.

The industry figure you most admire and why? 

Jim Preston, ex-CEO of the BPGI – he has incredible intelligence and humility.

Your best piece of advice to a colleague? 

Step back and look at the bigger picture.

The most influential company in the OP industry and why?

Staples because of its success across all markets – superstore, contract and SMB.

Your favourite event on the OP circuit? 

The BPGI annual conference.

What do you think has been the best innovation in the OP industry in the last two years?

Pilot FriXion pens.

What is your favourite office product?

The Papermate correction roller (the snail!).

What do you think will be the biggest single issue affecting the OP industry over the next five years? 

Supplier consolidation.

What business book would you recommend as essential reading? 

Leadership 101 by John C Maxwell.

If you could invite two famous people for dinner, who would they be and why would you invite them? 

American comedians Robin Williams and Jim Carrey – you wouldn’t stop laughing! 

What do you like least about the office products industry? 

Companies running operations from Australia do not understand the New Zealand market.

What TV programmes do you find most entertaining or irritating? 

Most entertaining is The Big Bang Theory. Most irritating is American Idol

Your favourite movie, and why?

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest because of the acting of Jack Nicholson.

If you won the lottery, what would be the first thing you would do? 

I would travel Route 66 in the US, in a Mustang.

If you had to sing at a karaoke next weekend, which song would you choose? 

Whole Lotta Love by Led Zeppelin.

Your most embarrassing industry-related experience?

I once dressed up as the Green Lantern at our dealer group Expomania event!