Tricoire graduated as an electrical engineer and started working for Alcatel, but it wasn’t until after he completed his MBA, when he began working for Schneider Electric, that he started making big strides in his career. An active and hands-on leader, Tricoire personally relocated to Hong Kong when the company needed to expand their Asia operations.
Tricoire graduated from École supérieure d’électronique de l’Ouest with an electrical engineering degree in 1985, but says he was not the most studious person at the time. Later he would complete an MBA at what is now Emlyon Business School.
After obtaining an engineering degree in 1985, Tricoire worked at Alcatel, Schlumberger and Saint-Gobain, in various positions. In 1986 he went back to studying, gaining an MBA at Emylon Business school. Tricoire has described this as an ‘awakening’ that broadened his view on the world, companies, leadership, and emotional intelligence.
Following his MBA he joined Merlin Gerin, which would become part of Schneider Electric. Over the next 13 years he would hold various positions in the company, being based in Italy, China, and South Africa. In 1999 he was made Head of Global Strategic Accounts, and in 2002 became Executive Vice-President of Schneider Electric’s international division.
In 2003 he was made CEO, and in 2006 was appointed as Chairman and Chief Executive, a position he holds to this day.
Tricoire noted that the company had a ‘miss’ in Asia, and has stated that, “the core [growth] of urbanization, of manufacturing, of the population and therefore of digitization was not happening where we were at that time.” Because of this, he scattered the leadership team across the globe in 2011, with Tricoire himself relocating to Hong Kong, along with several members of his management team.
Tricoire likes to travel, and while he gave up white-water kayaking and backpacking a long time ago, he likes to remain active while on vacation with his family.