Guiding Prologis’ Customer Led Solutions Division Through Trust, Encouragement and a Focus on Operational Excellence
Paris-based Francois Rispe leads Prologis’ Customer Led Solutions division and is the company’s global head of energy. We sat down with Francois to learn more about how he’s working to move the needle globally in ways that bring value beyond our real estate portfolio and how his leadership style is all about trust and building confidence.
PLD Communications Team: Francois, please give us some insight into your background—education, memberships, volunteer work.
Francois: I have a master’s degree in economics from the University of Paris Sorbonne and a master’s in economics and management from Sciences Po Paris. I’m a board member of the French-American Chamber of Commerce; a member of Le Cercle, a group of French CEOs and managing directors of foreign businesses in France; and President of the Ambassadors of the French charity Les Apprentis d’Auteil, which is helping more than 30,000 young people in distress through education, training and support. My personal role in this charity is the result of Prologis having been a supporter of the organization through IMPACT Day, the company’s annual day of volunteerism which spans the globe.
PLD Communications Team: Tell us about your time at Prologis.
Francois: I joined AMB Property Corporation in 2006 and opened up the Paris office. At that time, I began to build both the business and the team and then had the opportunity to run the Southern Europe region (France, Italy and Spain). When AMB and Prologis merged in 2011, I became the Southern Europe region head until July 2019, at which time I moved into my new role. In addition, I’m the global account owner of GEODIS, one of Prologis’ largest customers.
PLD Communications Team: Please share some of your successes and milestones.
Francois: Regarding Essentials Europe, we have seen positive progress with LED Essentials in particular. LED Essentials provides two very important benefits: It reflects the company’s commitment to the environment and it delivers significant cost savings and value to our customers.
The Energy team has had great successes lately with customers like Amazon and is rolling out a community solar program in New York; a scalable SolarX program in the Netherlands; and numerous SolarSmart programs that are absolutely going to move the needle. Quite frankly, I give all the kudos to our team, who each day show their commitment to doing their best. As for me, I’m working on accelerating our sales plans and preparing for the next opportunities: EV charging and battery storage.
PLD Communications Team: How do your roles support the company’s long-term goals?
Francois: By nature, I have always had a strong connection to our 3Cs—customer centricity, change through innovation and operational excellence, and culture and talent. I enjoy interacting with customers and exploring new territories and combine the two to create business opportunities. Working on Essentials and Energy has been a natural career evolution and a source of motivation to do something new that will be impactful above and beyond the logistics real estate business.
PLD Communications Team: Tell us about your leadership style.
Francois: Only my colleagues could answer this question but I know how important it is to be open-minded, a good listener and inspiring to those around you. I describe myself as a hands-off type of leader, and I always trust the people I work with—this is a critical foundation for both individual and team success. I like to help develop my teams by creating a trusted environment and leveraging my colleagues’ strengths. When I see my colleagues grow and expand their knowledge and roles, I feel both happy and humbled, as their success is a mirror to how I myself can grow.
PLD Communications Team: You have a very big job! Where do we find you outside of work?
Francois: My family comes first but has constantly been challenged by my many other passions that include traveling around the globe, skiing, alpinism, hiking, reading, poetry, history, learning Italian and playing the guitar. I also like to renovate old real estate.