For Boualem Saidi, Senior Bayer Representative and Crop Science Country Group Head (CDH) at Bayer Romania, Bulgaria, and the Republic of Moldova, 2022 was full of major achievements, despite numerous internal and external challenges, many of which were shared with the entire business world.
By Anda Sebesi
From supply tensions and war at our borders to high inflation and endless uncertainty for businesses and individuals alike, Bayer managed to deliver outstanding double-digit growth across all the countries in which it operates. “We were able to perform well while deeply transforming our core business, with digitalization as a key enabler in both the Crop Science and Healthcare areas, while embedding sustainability as integral part of our business strategy and success,” Saidi says.
The Group invested in digital farming and agronomy solutions while helping farmers make smart decisions for their crops and reduce their impact on the environment by using fewer natural resources and cutting emissions. “We continued to support underserved communities with healthcare programmes and initiatives and we consistently worked towards reducing the operational carbon footprint of our seed production site in Sinesti, which is one of the largest corn seed factories in Europe,” he adds.
The covid-19 pandemic, the rising inflation putting pressure on all business areas, and the extreme weather conditions that negatively impacted corn production were some of the major challenges Bayer faced last year, but the company managed to find solutions for each of them. “Covid-19 was still a factor in 2022, but we were able to keep all our employees safe and improved the working environment through hybrid and flexible approaches while ensuring business continuity and strengthening our supply chain capabilities. As a response to the impact of inflation, we implemented responsible pricing management for our products, and for our employees across the tree countries, we secured additional salary increases. To deal with the extreme weather conditions, we introduced innovative seeds that are more tolerant to drought and deployed an innovative digital farming solution called Climate FieldView, which helps farmers better plan and manage water resources.”
The success of any company stems from its leaders and their leadership style. Saidi describes himself as a “purpose-driven leader” whose aim is to help his team understand how everyone can contribute and relate to Bayer’s business goals and to the “Health for all, hunger for none” company vision. “I am a people-oriented leader; I work for people and with people, and that can be translated into empowering teams and delegating decision-making as much as possible, to the level that’s closest to the customer or action. I focus not only on seizing business opportunities, but also on providing a safe and trusted environment for people to perform, develop, and grow using a ‘test and learn’ mindset.”
One of his strong beliefs when it comes to leadership is based on the idea that what has made one successful until today might not be the same thing that helps them succeed in the future. “We constantly need to challenge ourselves, stay creative and curious, and carefully monitor new trends. Plus, I prefer to see the glass as being half full and positively influence the future while inspiring, supporting, and motivating both teams and customers to aim above and beyond.”