Large-scale business players, entrepreneurs and government officials of Voronezh region participated in the Entrepreneurship Forum and the Wilhelm Stoll Award, which took place in Voronezh.
The Wilhelm Stoll Award is a form of merit recognition for entrepreneurs in the economic and social areas of Voronezh oblast.
The programme of the event was varied, including lectures, workshops and plenary sessions. For many participants and visitors, the Mentality of Russian and German Business panel discussion was the highlight of the event. Stefan Duerr, President of EkoNiva Group, told the audience about the history, primary areas of activity and development prospects of the company, and drew a comparison between the domestic and German business.
‘In many business matters, Germany is more akin to Russia than to the United States of America’, shares Stefan Duerr. ‘But still there are differences. The rules of conducting business in Russia resemble those of hockey, involving a tough power struggle. Conversely, business in Germany is comparable to basketball, where even the slightest contact is a violation.’
Stefan Duerr touched upon the subject of social responsibility, which is strong in Germany and is currently gaining momentum in Russia.
‘Our countries are similar in this respect’, continues Stefan Duerr. ‘I grew up in the country and I was brought up to take care of the neighbours. EkoNiva takes its social responsibility seriously, improving the conditions of life in the communities of the regions of our presence.’
The matrix organisational structure, which is uncommon for Russia, was another subject of the discussion. The double subordination structure was introduced at all enterprises of EkoNiva seven years ago. For instance, a dairy manager is accountable to both the director of the enterprise, and the chief herd manager.
All in all, the attendees of the panel discussion, which ended with miscellaneous topics, gained a lot of valuable insights.
By Viktor BARGOTIN