Archivo de la categoría: Equipo y entrevistas

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.

 

Daniel Panadero: “At GH, the doors to professional advancement are always open”

Daniel Panadero started as a welder in Beasain and is now the Chief Sales Officer in Poland. Along the way, he helped open plants in Brazil and the US. He is a clear example of GH promoting internal talent. We’re interviewing him on our blog so he can tell us more about his journey and vision for GH.

Tell us how you came to GH.
I finished my Professional Training studies in Goierri and started working as a welder; first at CAF, then at Guria. Some time after, a friend told me that GH was hiring, so I signed up for the selection process. I remember Asier Etxeberria had me do a welding test. Then they called me back, and the rest is history. I’ve been with GH now for 17 years.

After so many years, do you remember your first few days at GH? 
I have wonderful memories of how I started. The entire team welcomed me in and showed me how everything worked. One of the things that is really striking when you start working at GH is the family atmosphere at the company. Senior management is always there if you need to talk, and the doors to professional advancement are always open.

Your case is a clear example. How many roles have you had since you started working at GH?
I’ve worn many hats: welder, production manager, product director, sales… I started in the Beasain plant, but then had the opportunity to develop professionally abroad in countries such as Brazil and the United States. There, I helped open those respective plants with truly great results. Now I’m in Poland working as the Chief Sales Officer. I’m a very grateful person, and each time GH passed an opportunity my way, I accepted.

“Each time GH passed an opportunity my way, I accepted”

Out of all your work experience at GH, what was the greatest challenge you’ve faced? Possibly coming to work in Poland. It’s a different country, with a different culture, and a very different language, so until you’re able to start stumbling through the language, you have to have a lot of patience, know how to listen, and pay attention to what’s being said.

How long did it take you to start getting a grasp of the language?
About a year and a half. I signed up for a gym and tried to connect with lots of people. I read in Polish a great deal as well, and the translator helped me understand it. Thanks to all of that, after a year and a half I started to understand and speak the language somewhat. Now I don’t have any issue selling in Polish.

What do your clients in Poland value the most?
Well, the same as everywhere else: sincerity. If there is a problem, or if the delivery will be delayed, the client needs to know that information as soon as possible. If you don’t do that for any reason, and then there are issues, you’ve lost a client.

“Sincerity is what clients everywhere value the most”

Which of your clients in Poland are of particular note?
After ten years, we continue to have better and more loyal clients. We increase sales each year, which is great news. For me, Stalma is a great client. We have developed major projects for them, and have two more pending projects for next year. I have a great relationship with them personally.

Do you intend to continue living in Poland? Do you enjoy your life there?
I came for six months and have been here now for ten years, so I think that says it all. It’s a country with lots of forested lands and nature, and I really like that. Also, I was offered the Southern Poland Chief of Sales Group position for next year. That’s a new challenge and a new opportunity to grow, and I’m very excited to do so.

“Working in such different positions has helped me have a wider point of view over all the work that GH does”

First of all, congratulations. And lastly, what have you learned after having held so many different job positions in so many countries?
I have a lot of energy, and I used to get angry easily. However, discovering different cultures has taught me to be patient, learn to listen, and be a better person. For its part, working in such different positions has helped me have a wider point of view over all the work that GH does. For example, when you’re in the workshop, you don’t tend to appreciate the work done in the office. But I know the importance and value of this and many other job positions.