Mugur Pantaia, Managing Director of HP Inc Romania since 1st of November 2015, BPO&ITO approximately 1300 employees
How did you start your career? Which were your first steps? How did you envision your career?
I have started my career in IT while still being a student of Cybernetics, working as IT (Junior) Manager for a public sector company, moving (1 year prior to graduation, in 2000) to Hewlett-Packard Romania so I can say my entire IT career overlaps pretty much with my career in HP. I started in HP as a “sales assistant” for the entire sales office, moving to a sales operations role, then becoming a Technical Consultant, Category Manager for PCs&Notebooks, Partner Business Manager, Corporate, Enterprise Account Manager, Distribution and Channel Manager, Business Unit General Manager and eventually Managing Director.
What were your key career moments (those that had an impact on your professional journey)?
I do not see my professional development as a “bumpy road” filled with key career moments; I would say every single job change in my career has been proved to be key to my professional development. I am absolutely convinced I would have not been even considered as a potential candidate for the GM/MD roles if it wouldn’t have been the overall experience I have gathered from all and each individual job I have performed over the years.
What is the best three most valuable career lessons you have learned?
First of all, I try to motivate myself and keep my “thirst for knowledge” alive, doing my best to learn something new every time I get the chance (attending events, taking trainings, reading, etc.); second: the most challenging experiences were also the most rewarding ones so each time I face a professional challenge I only focus on finding the optimal solution as I am convinced eventually it will only help me becoming a better version of myself. Last but not least: the biggest and most impactful wins I had, were the wins achieved by the contribution of each team individual, not the wins brought by one member of the team so I challenge myself all the time to develop a team in which each member is motivated to bring his own contribution to the team’s wins.
Why did you choose Business Service Industry? What were top 3 reasons for choosing HP Inc?
I have chosen the IT Industry, it was the Business Service Industry who chose me and I am extremely grateful for this. HP has been proving in the last 80 years is a leading technology company, with unbelievable talented and enthusiast employees a company who always looks into finding the best ways to professional development of its own employees. I am the “living proof” to that!
What are your/your company’s plans for 2020?
Our goal is to keep the pace of sales growth (focusing on further market share growth, Managed Print Services and Device As A Service opportunities) while also continuing strengthening HP Inc’s footprint in Romania. There are 13 HP Inc business units present in Romania, offering end-to-end sales cycle solutions in about 25 foreign languages and placing us in the top three HP Inc locations in Europe. With 100 job openings every month in Romania, we are proud to have been voted by the Romanian employees on the recruitment website www.undelucram.ro as “the most desired employer in the field of BPO & Services”.
What do you think would be the keywords of the year for managers in the Business Services industry? Automation? Cutting costs?
Digital transformation is a hot topic for all business leaders today, and at HP Inc. we look to reskill our workforce to drive automation, AI and digitally transform our company.
We constantly talk about the skills of the future and we have been searching for new and better ways to work. This year we are launching new initiatives with the help of our colleagues who raised their hand to take on a new opportunity. Now they are leading projects such as the Digital Academy, a development program sponsored by the Bucharest Site Management team. By enrolling in one of the 3 development areas (Project Management, Automation and RPA or Data Analysis), they will have access to attend specialized trainings, receive mentoring, acquire and develop new skills.
Tell us a little bit about your private life. Tell us about your passions, family. What do you do to relax?
My family is the strong supporting pillar I built my professional life on. I love travelling, scuba diving, skiing, playing tennis and more recently I have discovered the passion of sailing so I take every opportunity I have to combine any of them.
If you were starting now your career, knowing the present and near future opportunities, what would you do? What career would you pursue?
I think it is quite obvious that both technology and services will continue to be key areas for growth or future development so I would focus on the two. Fortunately HP is very well equipped to address these opportunities and (coming from a position of strength, as a technology leader) can easily pursue them. So, call me subjective but I think there are plenty of opportunities for young and enthusiast professionals to join us and further design their career paths.
What are the top 3 skills that you would develop? What would you do and what would you avoid doing?
I do not dare to claim I have a magic recipe for success. I think there is a reason for the limitless diversity there is in the Universe so I also think each of us have to identify our own most suitable professional path. It is up to each of us to: question, challenge, motivate ourselves and eventually find the right path for each of us. However I have the strong belief each of us is perfectly well equipped to pursue its own “road to success”.