“A successful person finds the right place for himself. But a successful leader finds the right place for others.”
John C. Maxwell, Author, Speaker, Pastor
The European continent is divided today into at least two “halves” by history and by business. While there are some disputes over which European countries reside in which regional classification, Maccabeus identifies Eastern Europe’s countries as Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Ukraine. The Second World War, subsequent Cold War, and Industrial Revolution radically-changed the Eastern European landscape, but there is still a very deeply-rooted, nationalistic DNA to the region that is critical to understand, respect, and, quite often, admire.
Maccabeus understands and respects those differences and has recognized for years that the Eastern European region’s AutoMobility Industry is growing and expanding rapidly (due mostly to relatively low cost labor, overall political and economic stability, favorable tax considerations, and the ease of investing in the region). Since 1989, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Volkswagen, MAN, Volvo, General Motors, Fiat, and Hyundai-Kia have opened plants in Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Romania. As such, Maccabeus has leveraged a very diversified approach in supporting clients both in the region and internationally (which is critical in this constantly-evolving region). Many folks don’t realize that the Czech Republic exported 1.4 million cars in 2019 and is dominated by Škoda, Hyundai, and Toyota/PSA (a joint venture); or that the VW Group and Daimler produce most cars and car parts in Hungary (where AutoMobility represents about 5% of the GDP with 90% of the cars being exported); or that Poland’s diversified economy and export structure allows it to leverage its AutoMobility Industry to the tune of 10%+ of its total industrial production; or that Romania is Germany’s largest export partner (with a 22.9% share of total exports); or that Slovakia works primarily with Volkswagen, Kia, and the PSA Group. As we’ve worked with most Automotive OEM’s in the world, Maccabeus is able to “marry” our international relationships and experiences with those OEM’s with the local country and/or regional requirements to deliver the best results locally. Our Eastern Europe-based AutoMobility Clients include brands and clients like Citroën, Daimler, Fiat, Ford, GM, Honda, Hyundai-Kia, Jaguar-Land Rover, Lancia, Opel/Vauxhall, Peugeot, Renault, Škoda, Toyota, Volvo, and VW.
While Eastern Europe is “diverse”, it is not as diverse as its cousin to the west (Western Europe). With rich histories and corresponding legacies, each country is very distinct from its neighbors and those differences are even more unique as you consider the many regions within each country. Recruiting to a client in Budapest is extremely different than recruiting to a client in Bucharest – even they sound very similar, the cultures, customs, heritages, industries, and languages are very different. And this is exceptionally-true in the more rural areas of countries. It is critically-important for Executives considering roles in one of the countries to understand the regional cultural differences. And it’s even more critical for the Executive Recruiting Firm to get this “right” from the beginning (to avoid hiring “misfires”, search “re-do’s”, etc.).
Maccabeus has been working in Eastern Europe for over thirty (30) years for both domestic and international clients and companies. Maccabeus understands Western Europe from the inside-out.
Culture, Culture, Culture
Realtors and related real estate investors will regularly talk about the most important decision for making an real estate investment is “location, location, location”. At Maccabeus, we say Executive recruiting comes down to three (3) words, as well – “culture, culture, culture”. Specifically, the culture of the company (or the client), the Executive, and the Country, Region, etc.
While it’s true that corporate vs. individual cultural fit is very important, what often gets missed is the “regional cultural fit”. Per the chart below, it’s important to remember how widely-dispersed Western Europe’s population is – as well as the legacy and Genesis of each of Eastern Europe’s twenty-three (20+) countries and corresponding cities, regions, etc. Anyone who’s lived and/or worked in Eastern Europe understands full-well how different the countries and their cities and regions are from each other.
At Maccabeus, we understand the Regional differences in each Eastern European country and how to apply those unique qualities across the cultural aspects of both companies (clients) and Executives (and their Families). We have recruited to many of the countries in Western Europe from very rural, low-population areas to densely-populated city centers and surrounding suburbs. We know the differences across Eastern Europe (both regionally and from an industry perspective) not just from an Executive Recruitment Firm’s perspective, but also as Executives who have considered relocations and/or new career challenges directly for ourselves and our Families. While we have counseled hundreds of Executives to not take an opportunity based on their concerns around cultural differences (based on location and/or the company), our Partners and Staff have also declined offers ourselves as Industry Executives – opportunities that just weren’t the right “fit” for either ourselves and/or our Families. We get it.
Finding the right Executives takes a tenacity to see through the surface of experiences and to look into the intangibles behind who a leader really is as a person. To get to know the companies, clients, Executives, Families, etc. behind the search project. Maccabeus is committed to and has a strong track record of recruiting and placing Executives across a diverse landscape of industries and locations.
We would welcome the opportunity to discuss this further with you and your Board.
“Be humble in this life, that God may raise you up in the next.”St. Stephen I of Hungary