Breaking the S-curve
“After 20 years at De;Longhi, my career was approaching a plateau and the company had tracked the typical S-curve – where rapid sales growth slows and begins to taper off. So at the mid-point of my career, I found myself asking, ‘What can I contribute to this company and to myself? How can I go forward differently?"
“The company’s big challenge was to escape this plateau phase and continue evolving. I felt I needed to do the same if I was going to successfully contribute – that’s why I came to LBS.
“The EMBA developed my understanding of M&A, strategic innovations how to create new value. I was able to immediately suggest practical insights and implement change in the boardroom. Before LBS, I couldn;t have contributed in this way with this confidence.”
“Three months after I completed my EMBA, I was promoted to COO and CTO of the De;Longhi Group. Prior to that, I was responsible for the operations and technical product development for some product areas such as home care and kitchen. Now I’m responsible for the whole group."
“In my new role, I operate with just five other peers at C-level, so my decisions have a direct impact on De;Longhi’s business and growth strategy."
“The most valuable piece of advice I’ve taken forward has concerned our approach to acquisitions – ‘Try to get the best out of both company cultures.’ Over the years, De;Longhi has acquired companies such as Braun and Kenwood to act as accelerators. Often the acquiring company dominates and tries to impose its culture on the acquired business. But I discovered that every culture has the same potential to bring value."
“For example, after acquiring Kenwood, we changed some of our processes thanks to the experience of Kenwood’s employees. To get the best from everyone, we need a respectful approach – to listen, suspend judgement and discover as much as possible about what and who we are buying. Now we avoid imposing our policies, processes and perceptions – and take time to understand everybody’s perspective.”