CEO Interview on Korean Electric Times (07/11/18)
On Nov 1, Nexans Group CEO Christopher GUERIN was interviewed by Korean Electric Times on the occasion of his first visit to Korea.
Here is the translation of article.
The new CEO, who is in his 40s, leads global cable company with sales of 6.4 billion euros.
Last July, Nexans Group appointed Christopher GUERIN as a new CEO who is the youngest in its history.
He joined Nexans Group in 1997 and became Group CEO after working 20 years and getting twelve promotions. He is widely regarded as an expert in cable industry as he started as a Sales person and became EVP Europe since 2014. On Nov 1, we met him at a hotel in Seoul and interviewed with him who made his first visit to Korea since becoming Group CEO. sssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssccccccssssddddsssssssssssssssssssssssss
Christopher clearly expressed his management philosophy on innovation and strategies for the future which are the topic of businesses today.
He added that “Nexans will drive future with customers which is safer, smarter, and more efficient. We aim to develop green and sustainable growth with innovative, customer centric ideas while thriving in ambiguous and complex world."
Also he said, “Nexans aims to procure and cultivate young talents while actively introducing new management method and company culture such as Work-Network utilizing digital platform, work-life balance to flexibly respond to future market.”
He considers that the root of his early success lies in his ‘communication’ skill.
“Everyone has a good idea and there is always something I can learn from. Ever since I joined Nexans I have been communicating with a lot of people from different industry and I think that was the important part of my journey to become CEO.”
He loves to talk and spends lot of times talking with young generation around the world.
“Young people have a clear purpose on their duty at work and belonging to the company. Also they enjoy working together as a team, prefer to have missions than functions, and they are digital natives. To work together with young talents who will eventually lead the future, we have to keep listening to them and giving feedback by cross-generations and cross-functions, and change company culture as well.”
Since becoming CEO, Christopher is focusing on establishing corporate culture which is a good company to work for. He explained, “We will deploy a mandatory 52-hour work week in advance, starting from mid 2019, ahead of Korean government policy. Also, we will continue to increase the number of women employees at management level because I believe the world seen by women and men are different and we need to have a right balance on the view of the world.”
The man himself who makes efforts to maintain work-life balance does meditation retreat for 3 days, twice a year in mountains without computer, cell phone, people. It has been 10 years since he started meditation with his deep interest and trust in Oriental philosophy.
Another priority that he puts stress as much as company culture is the future market.
“This era is defined as “VUCA” - Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous. According to the analysis of the mega trend done by economic experts, the world’s population will grow by 20% and urbanization will grow by 40% by 2030. Therefore, it confirms that the consumption on wires and cables will explode in 10 years due to its growing needs for electricity, telecom & data and mobility.”
He explained cable business in the future while talking about Artificial Intelligence(AI) technology.
“In last year’s keynote speaking of Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, he made a demonstration of AI talking on the phone to make hair appointment. The person on the phone didn’t realize that it was AI. It gave me the confident that AI will be everywhere in our daily lives in the near future.
Moreover, this explains that the world will need 100 times more cables in the coming 10 years just to support AI industry, and it surely is a great opportunity for us."
Also, he has a firm belief in roles and position of Nexans in Korea within Group.
He said, “Korea is one of our flagship in Asia and at the same time the 8th biggest country within Group in sales-wise. Especially one of our research centers is located in Korea. Jincheon NRC is dedicated to driving growth of Group through developing innovative product and introducing new technology.”
He added that, “Even though it was a short visit to Korea, I am very proud to spend quality time with employees in Korea discussing future cable market and new ideas. Nexans will be a global leading cable company which leads future industry as well is socially responsible with the world’s best technical oriented products and services.“
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