Name: Vlad Simionescu
Title: Global Bids&ARROW Manager
Organisation: Worldline Global
With more then 15 years' experience under my belt, mostly in Accounting & Finance I come as a fully stacked package.But I learned that there is always plenty of room to grow,no matter how experienced you are. It's always up to you how you great this opportunity in your life choices,and skillset.
Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!
I hope Vlad's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!
1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?
Applying your natural skills to the actual requirements on the different roles where leadership is required, and the constant work that it needs to be always up to speed with an ever-changing environment and people
2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
Through hard work.I was promoted from an internal team,being among the highest performs for a number of months in a row. I have been trusted to fill-in the shoes of the departing Manager, basically replacing him; that involved two separate projects, with different customers and KPIs, and taking care of my former colleagues, 20 people,many of which weren't that happy for my promotion.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
First thing is getting coffee and a frugal breakfast, during which I run through the days plans in my head, prioritizing most important/urgent,over the rest. Then I start with any unreplied e-mail I might have,for 2 or three hours.Usually this is also a time for meetings and calls that have one things in particular;they require my soft skills, rather than my hard skills. Or just listening in.I am also not very talkative in the morning. Lunch is served,for half-an hour,then I go through other meetings, usually the complex ones I take right after lunch,for another 2 to 3 hours.Also,I try to finish everything that I have planned for the day,mostly at least an hour before I leave the office/close down my laptop,so that in the last hour of my office hours I can solve any ad-hoc or urgent situation that might appear(and they always do).Once I leave office/close down the laptop for the work day, I try to disconnect as much as possible,giving attention and time to my family,friends and hobbies.No work related thoughts or activities,until the next morning.
4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?
I actually had a meeting this morning with one of my peers about a possible new career path,and our conclusion at the end of it is that,in order for a Leader to be perceived as such(not to actually be,just perceived as such)is that,apart from all the obvious requirements, one is essential: being also liked and popular among your peers.It is not enough to get kudos,rewards and bonuses for the good job you do,or the an expert on your subject matter. People's perception of you will always involve a degree of subjective thought process into it,that you either disregard,as a leader, or see it as an opportunity for growth
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
There is no one book to teach you how to be a good leader, but I think that I took some inspiration,guidance and a sense of reflective attitude towards Plato's "The Republic"and also Marcus Aurelius' teachings;stoicism,bassically has influenced and shaped my way of approaching leadership quite a lot over the years.
6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?
I would offer this advice,to myself, more than 10 years ago, when I was first promoted as a Team Lead: Don't stress out. Everything is a learning-curve,it just so happens for you,right now, to be this one. Take the opportunity to learn about yourself,most of all,to explore what it feels like in the new role. And smile more :D .
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?
A really brief one: It was a transition phase between two jobs,during the Pandemic.The year was 2021.I was laid off form an underpaying, overqualified for role in the Finance world.A time of suffering,on all fronts. For 8 months I had to borrow from friends and family in order to pay rent and bills. No savings to speak of. I was planning to leaving the country and go live with my parents,take a year's sabbatical. Got online to buy coach tickets(no money for plane tickets,to expressive).And I receive out of the blue a private message, in my Linkedin message box,inviting me for an interview with my current company. Get dressed up, start working, do your best, but never give up