Portrait: Meet Julien Le bras
1. Could you introduce yourself in a few words?
My name is Julien LE BRAS (pronounced "le braz"), born in Brittany and with an educational background in international trade.
I have 15 years' experience in Sales and Key Account management, including some twelve years spent in China and Hong Kong. I joined Serge Ferrari in April 2014 as Business Development Manager for Asia. I then spent some time managing the Benelux market in 2017, after which I returned to France.
2. What is your position now and what does it consist of?
I joined the Marine and Furniture BG in 2018 with the following responsibilities:
- Heading the ten strong furniture sales team
- Setting up commercial bridges between the Asia-Europe-USA zones (known as Cross-Border Business) and developing new markets such as Medical / Healthcare as well as "ready-made" products for immediate use
- Providing the team with technical and marketing support: for launching new products, contributing technical advice on production, drawing up commercial offers, etc...
3. How would you describe a typical day?
No day is ever "typical". You always have to be in the thick of things. Goal # 1 is to cover all areas in a single day (Asia in the morning, Europe around midday and America in the afternoon).
You have to be very flexible in your schedule to manage urgent requests and respond to colleague and customer needs.
4. What projects are you currently working on?
- On the one hand we are finalising the process of integrating the Plastitex product lines in partnership with our Italian colleagues.
- While on the other, we are working on speeding up the commercial aspects of Batyline Elios and Stamskin Zen to make sure we are fully primed to attack 2021 under the best conditions.
5. Which company department(s) do you most frequently work with?
The advantage of being part of the BG is having almost daily contact with virtually every one of the company's departments (Logistics and ADV, R&D, Samples, Finance and Communication). This means we are always learning and efficiently coordinating the ongoing interaction between customers and sales teams.
6. What do you like most about your job? What makes you get up in the morning?
Interacting and working with a multicultural and dynamic sales team!
Managing tailor-made projects (customising and joint creation) with my BG colleagues and the freedom to implement my ideas thanks to a senior management team that listens.
7. What is your greatest professional accomplishment?
Despite the distance (plus confinement), various cultures and working methods, we have managed to successfully generate a viable team spirit and cohesion. Qualities that are essential in view of the “interconnected” aspect of our business.
For example, a brand of furniture managed in Europe will generate a sale for a manufacturer in Asia who will then deliver the products to a US retailer. This joint operation and regular interaction of information are essential for ensuring our global business is operating smoothly. A process I often refer to as "whodoeswhat and where?"