Archivo de la categoría: Equipo y entrevistas

Omar Khaled: “GH is our partner, even if it is just a supplier and distributor relationship”

Omar Khaled is a mechatronics engineer that is responsible for MISR, and the GH distributor in Egypt. As he explains, his life is basically revolving about his own company and how to manage and proceed for better. He is always looking for a better future for the company and our staff.

MISR is a company that means much more to you than just your professional career: it is part of your history, the history of your family. Could you explain to us that family connection and relevance that MISR has for you and your family members?
As you mentioned, the company is not only a business for us since all the family is involved. When I was a kid and we were having dinner with my father, he always talked about business and cranes. So, for us, for me and for my sisters, the cranes are our life. Whenever we went out with the family it was because of some event about cranes, that’s why I think I started gaining experience since primary school.  I have been always hearing the stories, hearing the problems, the challenges… and gaining experience without been aware that I was gaining that experience for my future.

“I think I started gaining experience since primary school”

At the age of 23-24, you took over the company that you have led for more than ten years. Could you explain to us what this step meant for you and what has changed since you arrived when you were just 20 years old and how you feel today?
I started my professional career within the company in 2013. I was working in the technical office. In 2015, my father, suddenly, passed away. So, I had to take over the company, with my sisters, of course. It was a hard time, it was like surviving for one or two years: we were surviving, not only working. We were taking control of the business, but also struggling the immediate issues. From my point of view, we are doing it fine and I think the reason behind this, let’s call it success, is the fact that my father built a successful organization. I have many colleagues and managers responsible for their own departments.

What can you tell us about your company, in professional terms? If you had to describe it, how would you do it?
This is an important question. We can say that our mystery is that this is a family business. That is why we treat our customers very close. We provide the service that you expect from a team that loves what they are doing. A team that is dedicated to what they are doing. So maybe this is our best description. We expect our customers have the feeling that we are easy to reach and flexible to adapt because everybody here, as I said, is dedicated to what they are doing. If I speak about my own family, as you said, is fully dedicated for this business. We are exclusively working in cranes, and we are focused in that business. Our slogan in this country company is: “crane ideas by engineers and for engineers”.

“My father built a successful organization”

GH only has good words about you and for you. They told us that they maintain a very close and long relationship with you. Could you share with us your story? How and when does the relationship arise in MISR and GH?
For us, GH is our partner, even if it is just a supplier and distributor relationship. I think we became partners throughout the years and the challenges we assumed together over the time. We do have a great relationship with GH since the early times and I have the feeling that, on different scales, of course, they are a little bit similar to us: they are also a family business, very flexible and very close to customers. The steps they have been taking in the very recent years are jumps, not only small progresses. This is why I believe that they are also 100% dedicated to the business and I believe the fact that there is a family behind this. And this is one of the main reasons that makes the difference from other competitors.

In the end, GH has to be flexible in order to adapt to the market needs and, in our case, very special requirements for each project. So, along the years we developed a strong and very connected business relationship with GH cranes. I think that, year by year, this relationship has become stronger and has develop more and more, and this is something very positive for us and for our common success.

In personal terms, I have been dealing with many people from GH cranes for the last ten years. We have made a very good job as a team in this market, the Egyptian, and of course it is not easy: there are many conflicts, there are many issues and there are many challenges that we have been through the past years, and I believe that we have survived them and make a progress to a better position than where we were ten years ago. Our aim is to solve the problem, to clear that challenge, not to point out however is responsible.

“Along the years we developed a strong and very connected business relationship with GH”

What does this link with GH mean to you?
I think it is it is perfect for the situation. I see that the stronger the better, the stronger, the more successful combination. And this means more jobs, more goals, more targets, and an easier communication on personal level. I believe that it is much easier to deal with someone who has understood you for the last ten years than looking for another one. That means dealing with someone who you know by heart that is supporting you. It is not trying to play, it is not trying to win over you, it is not trying to gain personal achievements. I am very satisfied and looking forward for more cooperation, I am looking forward for more success with this team.

Personally, I am very satisfied with whoever I’m dealing with. I am very satisfied and happy to be dealing with such a good professional and good person like Mikel, for example.

Which has been the most special concrete project with GH and why?
For me, the most special project is a mega power plant project. This project was very big with a huge value, and it had like 20 GH cranes, 8 of them is 200 tons and 4 of them 130 or 140 tons. It was one of the biggest offshore projects in GH history and it is not only special because of the capacity and the number of cranes. It is very special because of the timeline and schedule for this project. I was mentioning earlier that I supplied my father at the company in 2015, so this order was a huge challenge and with the support of GH team we managed to win the project. It is the biggest project we have ever supplied in Egypt. It is special in so many means.

I believe that we do have a big team behind, where everybody is responsible for his own part.

You are a young promise for the sector, do you have any goals that you have set for yourself? Tell us what your next steps are if you have any in mind.
My goals are what I achieved and built since today. My future goal is to have a bigger team, more people working, more people benefiting from MISR.

Carlos Gonçalves: “More and more companies are aware of the importance of a crane to improve their productivity”

Carlos Gonçalves is an emblematic figure in the GH branch office in Portugal. A sales representative since 2003, he is one of the architects of GH’s success in the country. And after all this time he continues to enjoy his work and celebrates each new crane he sells as if it were his first. We get to know him better in this interesting interview.

What did your training involve and where did you work before becoming part of the GH team in Portugal?
Although I’m Portuguese, my family emigrated to South Africa when I was young and that’s where I began my education. Interestingly, I started out in the arts since I initially studied Germanic languages. Before finishing, I went back to Portugal and started working in a Portuguese foundry as a sales representative.  My knowledge of the German language was very helpful when it came to selling in Germany. And, in fact, twelve years later I went to work for a German-Swiss foundry. There I sold parts for a company that was a competitor of GH, and the knowledge I gained from this helped convince GH to appoint me to the sales position in the branch office in Portugal in 2003.

What was your first impression of GH?
My first impression was very positive. It seemed to be very much like a family company but at the same time highly professional. There’s a lot of respect for the workers and everyone gives you a great welcome. In my case, Víctor Guerra was a great help and a very important person when I started. At that time, we didn’t have the training groups that we have today, and he was in charge of training you and helping you with everything you needed.

“Víctor Guerra was a great help and a very important person when I started”

You arrived when the Portuguese branch office was just establishing itself. What were your goals?
From the moment we opened the branch office we were clear that we were looking to be market leaders. To achieve this we knew it was essential to have an installation and support team and a sales team. Thanks to this, together with the quality and competitive prices of GH, we immediately achieved very positive market acceptance and expanded the brand throughout the country.

 What is the Portuguese market like? What do you think is the best thing about GH products?
In the past, what companies paid most attention to was the price. Today, luckily, they are more interested in other aspects such as quality and production times. At GH Portugal we have a greater production capacity than the competition. In fact, very often our customers can’t believe that we are so fast and efficient in terms of production times.
At the same time, Portugal has always been an exporter of moulds and tools for markets such as the German and US markets. They are very demanding markets, but the quality of our cranes means that we are up to the task.

How have you coped with the crises over recent years, first in 2008 and then the pandemic?
Despite the crises, since the crane is a product that can be used in many industries, we have always maintained very similar sales levels. Although one industry is in crisis, there will always be another that is not and that becomes a new opportunity for us. Also, fortunately, more and more companies in all industries are aware of the importance of a crane to improve their productivity.
The current pandemic has not affected us in terms of numbers either. One factor that has helped maintain those numbers is that we are now so well known. These days, it’s the companies that come looking for us and not the other way around.

“Despite the crises, since the crane is a product that can be used in many industries, we have always maintained very similar sales levels”

So, has the goal of being leaders been achieved? Who are your most important customers?
An example of GH’s growth over the years is the cranes installed in the Aveiro area, the third or fourth largest industrial district in the country. When I started there was only one GH crane installed in the entire district. Today, there are 154 cranes, compared with only one provided by the competition.
We have very important customers spread all over the country. As I said before, in Portugal the mould and tool industry stands out, but we also have important customers in other industries, such as granite and wind energy, for example.

And what is your goal for this year on a personal level?
I always like to sell a little more than the previous year, although it’s not always possible. In any case, my goal is always to continue maintaining the same sales levels. The truth is that I love selling cranes. That’s why, although I’ve been selling cranes for more than ten years, when I sell one I celebrate it as if it were the first crane I had ever sold in my life. And if I don’t, I’m not happy. My family at home always tells me to stop talking about cranes – I’m passionate about my work!

“Although I’ve been in this job for more than ten years, when I sell a crane I celebrate it as if it were the first crane I had ever sold in my life”

Finally, apart from sales, what would you highlight about all these years at GH?
The working relationships with my colleagues and with the people who work at GH in Spain. Speaking as someone who is Portuguese, you always have doubts about starting to work for a company that’s not from your country, but I immediately realised that at GH they are people of their word and with great human qualities. That’s why so many members of staff have been working for them for so long.


Carlos Gonçalves: «Cada vez mais empresas estão conscientes da importância de uma grua para melhorar a sua produtividade»

Carlos Gonçalves é um emblema da delegação da GH em Portugal. Comercial desde o ano de 2003, é um dos artífices do êxito da GH no país. Apesar da sua experiência, continua a desfrutar do seu trabalho e celebra cada nova grua que vende como se fosse a primeira. Ficamos a conhecê-lo melhor nesta interessante entrevista.

Qual é a sua formação e onde trabalhou antes de se juntar à equipa da GH em Portugal?Embora seja português, a minha família emigrou para a África do Sul quando eu era jovem e foi aí que comecei os meus estudos. Curiosamente, a minha primeira formação é literária, dado que me matriculei em línguas germânicas. Antes de terminar, regressei a Portugal e comecei a trabalhar numa fundição portuguesa como comercial. O meu conhecimento da língua alemã ajudou-me muito a vender na Alemanha. E, de facto, doze anos depois passei a trabalhar para uma fundição alemã-suíça. Lá, vendia peças para uma empresa que era concorrente da GH, e o conhecimento que adquiri com isso ajudou a GH a confiar-me a posição de comercial na sua delegação portuguesa em 2003.

Qual foi a sua primeira impressão da GH?
A minha primeira impressão foi muito positiva. Pareceu-me uma empresa muito familiar, mas, ao mesmo tempo, altamente profissional. Sente-se um grande respeito pelos trabalhadores e todos me acolheram estupendamente. No meu caso, o Victor Guerra foi de uma grande ajuda e uma pessoa muito importante na minha fase inicial. Nessa altura, não havia grupos de formação como existem atualmente, e ele era o responsável pela formação e por prestar auxílio em tudo o que fosse necessário.

«Victor Guerra foi de uma grande ajuda e uma pessoa muito importante na minha fase inicial».

Chegou quando a delegação de Portugal dava os seus primeiros passos. Quais eram os vossos objetivos?
Desde que abrimos a delegação, ficou claro para nós que queríamos ser líderes de mercado. Para tal, sabíamos que era fundamental contar com uma equipa de montagens e assistência, e uma equipa de vendas. Graças a isto, juntamente com a qualidade e os preços competitivos da GH, conseguimos rapidamente uma grande aceitação no mercado e expandimos a marca por todo o país.

Como é o mercado português? O que é que mais valoriza entre os produtos da GH?Antigamente, as empresas centravam-se no preço. Hoje, felizmente, valorizam outros aspetos, como a qualidade ou os tempos de execução. Na GH Portugal, temos uma capacidade produtiva superior à da concorrência. De facto, muitas vezes os nossos clientes não acreditam que sejamos tão rápidos e eficientes nos nossos tempos de execução.
Por outro lado, Portugal é um exportador nato de moldes e ferramentas para mercados como o alemão ou o norte-americano. São mercados muito exigentes e a qualidade das nossas gruas permite-lhes estar à altura.

Como suportaram as crises ao longo destes anos: a de 2008, a da pandemia…?
Como a grua é um produto que pode ser utilizado em muitas indústrias, apesar das crises, sempre mantivemos níveis de venda muito semelhantes. Mesmo que haja uma indústria em crise, haverá sempre uma indústria que não está em crise e que se torna numa nova oportunidade para nós. Além disso, felizmente, cada vez mais empresas em todas as indústrias estão a tomar consciência da importância de uma grua para melhorar a sua produtividade.
A atual pandemia também não nos afetou no que respeita a números. Um fator que nos ajudou a manter esses números é o facto de agora sermos tão conhecidos. Atualmente, é frequente serem as empresas a procurar-nos e não o contrário.

«Como a grua é um produto que pode ser utilizado em muitas indústrias, apesar das crises, sempre mantivemos níveis de venda muito semelhantes»

Então, o objetivo de se tornarem líderes foi atingido? Quem são os vossos clientes mais importantes?
Um exemplo do crescimento da GH ao longo dos anos são as gruas instaladas na zona de Aveiro, o terceiro ou quarto distrito industrial mais importante do país. Quando comecei, só havia uma grua da GH instalada em todo o distrito. Hoje em dia, estão instaladas 154 gruas e apenas uma é da concorrência.
Temos clientes muito importantes distribuídos por todo o país. Como disse anteriormente, em Portugal destaca-se a indústria de moldes e ferramentas, mas também temos clientes importantes noutras indústrias, como a do granito ou da energia eólica, por exemplo.

E, a nível pessoal, qual é o seu objetivo para este ano?
Eu gosto sempre de vender um pouco mais do que no ano anterior, embora nem sempre seja possível. Seja como for, o meu objetivo é sempre o de manter os mesmos níveis de vendas. O que é certo, é que gosto muito de vender gruas. É por isso que, apesar de vender gruas há mais de dez anos, quando vendo uma celebro-o como se fosse a primeira grua que alguma vez vendi na minha vida. E, se não o fizer, fico chateado. Em casa, a minha família diz-me sempre para parar de falar de gruas. Sou apaixonado pelo meu trabalho.

«Apesar de vender gruas há mais de dez anos, quando vendo uma celebro-o como se fosse a primeira grua que alguma vez vendi na minha vida.»

Para concluir, para além das vendas, o que destacaria de todos estes anos na GH?
A relação humana com os meus colegas e com as pessoas que trabalham na GH em Espanha. Como português, tem-se sempre dúvidas quanto a começar a trabalhar para uma empresa que não é do nosso próprio país, mas cedo percebi que na GH eles são pessoas de palavra e de grande qualidade humana. É por isso que muitos de nós trabalhamos para eles há tanto tempo.