Sales Magazine: Interview with Vladimir Sterescu, Country Manager CGS

`It is not easy….it is not easy to hold the flag and to keep it always high`.

Do you consider your role that of a strategist focused on the big picture or of a hands-on manager?

At first, I had to be involved in the day-to-day business, too, to be very hands-on. At present, when I have a team of 3000 people under my supervision, obviously, I don’t need to be that hands-on, I would even say that I have to trust people more, people I consider to have once trained or that have evolved thanks to various internal programmes and, now, I have more of a big picture mission, to anticipate the next steps and to develop ourselves. We were 1700 people four years ago, now we are 3000. Four years ago, we opened our second support centre. Today we have 6 support centres. We sort of anticipated what is going on the outsourcing market. We have anticipated that, particularly in Bucharest, the workforce market will become more and more competitive. We have anticipated that for many consultants that advised global companies to come to Romania, for them Romania was Bucharest and we realized that in 2010-2012 Bucharest will start to `boil`, meaning that we would be fighting for the same workforce…and then we went to Brasov. We were the first within the BPO space to leave Bucharest, although we had enough potential in Bucharest. In 2012, we opened a centre in Sibiu because we anticipated that we needed more German speakers, even though we already had around 200-250 German speakers in Brasov. The decision to open Sibiu centre in 2013 was taken in 2010, when people were already saying that Germany had surpassed the financial crisis and its economy was going well. I mean you have a delay until you find a space for the centre, you make a business-case for the shareholders, until you assess the market. All of these steps were foreseen. After 2012 we asked ourselves: `What is the next destination?` and we started to analyze the business.

For the full article, access