Silviu Dragomir, the CEO of Eucom
“The only constant thing is change.” – Heraclitus
Tell us about what happened with you & your company in the first weeks of this crisis
The first weeks of the crisis seem like such a long time ago! Time goes by fast when you are constantly changing and being hands on, trying to find solutions at every moment.
In a word, change, like Heraclitus once said. Change in the world, change as a company, change as individuals.
First, we were anxious to see in which direction to go. We did not know how big of an impact the crisis would have on our business, our cashflow, our activity, and our team. However, there was only one thing we were sure of. The fact that we had to keep going, for ourselves, for our clients, for our trainees and trainers, for all the people who relied on us. So, it does go back to the world, in a larger sense. While in a practical sense, it meant moving our classroom sessions online, working from home and ensuring quality through daily meetings.
What are your company’s top 5 priorities in this period?
When I think about this question, I look back to the moments before the crisis. It seems that now, under pressure, it is easier to prioritize, because the important things stand out, so you learn to see everything in a different light. You search for value in everything you do.
For sure, our first and main priority is the safety of our colleagues, our partners and our families. But four other priorities come to mind: keeping a high level of energy among ourselves to remain motivated, finding alternative solutions to keep our business going, staying customer oriented, and last but not least being in constant contact with our clients so with their feedback we can develop new lines of business to thrive in today’s new normal.
What were your challenges and how did you overcome them?
We had quite a few challenges in the beginning, I believe everybody did, this is what happens when the unexpected happens.
In the first weeks we experienced a decrease in the number of clients, cashflow problems and we even struggled to maintain contact with our team, our clients, our trainers and trainees. Still, through perseverance, we managed to overcome these obstacles by increasing the frequency of communication within the team, as well as our over 100 trainers, thereby increasing trust, but most of all by being united as a team, working together towards a common goal. This then becomes energy which guides our approach with clients, who benefit from the positive effect of our internal communication.
How did you adapt to the new working conditions?
I strongly believe, especially in our current situation, one must adapt by being open-minded, being aware of the changes that are occurring, being flexible, and taking advantage, enjoying the goods things, while learning how to deal with the not so good ones. It’s a lot, I know, but ultimately, I think it all comes down to our ability as individuals to constantly adapt to changing environments. I consider this as our main quality, to change with the environment, to stay relevant.
How did you adapt to the new working conditions?
This was a new thing for me. As a person who is always on the move, there was a risk of my own home becoming restricting. So, from the beginning, I knew I had to make my space a place that energizes me. My desk is in the living room, with my laptop and my printer and my bookshelf behind me. Having my books there kind of inspires me. Anyone on a call with me can see the different categories, too – leadership, business, entrepreneurship, parenting, literature – although I must admit it is my wife’s fine touch, since she organized the library. I just benefit from it.
On an even more personal note, behind me is a wall made of stone that reminds me of nature, and next to that my aquarium, which relaxes me and helps me think.
How do you stay motivated and productive? – tips & tricks of WFH
The thing that helps me stay motivated and productive is that I never give up on my vision and our company’s vision. This alone gets me up in the morning, even before I sit at my desk.
Later, I try to see what opportunities we have, and I try to understand where and how we can create learning experiences that will deliver results to our clients.
And in terms of WFH, I dress up every morning as if I were going to the office, I do sports to increase my level of energy, I eat healthily, without excesses, so I can focus on my tasks to realize the vision.
What do you miss from the “old days” when you were at the office?
I miss meeting people for coffee. By the way I am a big fan of coffee, everyone who knows me can testify to that. That’s why we have a fantastic machine at the office, which I miss. Also, I miss seeing the team, and feeling the energy of others during the whole day, not just in meetings.
How do you use in your advantage “the quarantine time”?
From my point of view, this period has helped me better understand the importance of discipline. I have established quite a strict schedule for myself. I do things when they are supposed to be done and I have become more aware of the importance of some activities that I used to do before the quarantine that I did not appreciate as much before. I talk to energic people more, as we share big ideas. It gives me good vibes.
But, work aside, I must say the most positive thing from our time in quarantine is spending time with my family. They have been my pillar.
Looking back at the last month, do you have a favourite moment?
This year, in March, we were supposed to have our 18 years anniversary. But because we couldn’t have it face-to-face, we had it online. It was great to connect with the team and share stories and remember the experiences that we have had over this past 18 years, even if virtually. It was my favourite moment.
What activities do you enjoy engaging in as a family or by yourself?
Now we’re getting personal! We enjoy having game nights, cooking together, having pyjama parties and taking care of things around the house. Doesn’t every family?
What habit, mechanism or idea will you preserve for your professional and personal life when quarantine will end?
Definitely, I will keep the running every day and listening to podcasts.
What will be your company’ first 3 priorities when the lock down is over?
Once the lockdown is over, our main priorities will be visiting our clients, that way we can continue delivering experiences that make people smile and say Wow!