The FINANCIAL — A successful businessman’s career means numerous gaps in his private life. All of them have to abandon certain things and postpone them for the future. That’s why each of them knows what he wants to do after retiring.
In two years Vakhtang Butskhrikidze, General Director of TBC Bank, will finish his active work in the banking sector. “I want to save my time, have a rest and pay more attention to my physical training,” Butskhrikidze said.
According to The FINANCIAL’s inquiry most businessmen will focus on their previously neglected private lives and finally pursue their true interests after retiring.
“For me it won’t be difficult to retire. Because I’m a golf fan, I’m a sailor, I’m a hunter, a fisher. I’ve never had time to do all these things that I’ve been dreaming of,” Gilbert Hie, Chief Executive Officer of Bank Republic, Societe Generale Group, told The FINANCIAL.
Mr Gilbert Hie was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Bank Republic, SocGen subsidiary, in Georgia in October 2006. A French National born in 1953 and graduating from CESB Paris he joined the International Division of SocGen Paris in 1979 and then ensured various commercial and management positions abroad for Société Générale Group over the last 25 years in many countries including Morocco, Senegal, Switzerland, Singapore, and Poland. His last position was Deputy General Manager of United Arab Bank in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
“Why do businessmen change their careers? It’s a great question and I think it’s due to a number of reasons, especially for those in management. Often the reason is just due to circumstances that occur and the opportunities available. There is an element of boredom in always doing the same thing and wanting to try something different,” Michael Cowgill, President of Georgian American University (GAU), told The FINANCIAL.
“Can one succeed in another area? Another reason is that there are certain skills that are applicable to many different career paths and if one is willing to take a risk – one understands that those skills are transferable,” Cowgill explained.
“Generally the changes go from a more technical career to more of a management role. Voluntarily it is often successful. However, sometimes when technical staff members are promoted to higher levels of supervision and management, the “Peter Principle” occurs – which means being promoted to a level of ‘incompetence’,” Cowgill noted.
Opposite to Cowgill’s words, Rusudan Kervalishvili and George Goguadze are amongst others who have chosen politics as their second career.
“I achieved all my aims. I created the country’s financial arteries. It was strategically important with its social programmes scales. I became the best manager of the year, the best General Director, and also Man of the Year. After all my achievements it was difficult to think about something more,” George Goguadze, Member of Parliament, told The FINANCIAL.
“Politics offers more possibilities, take the new project offering our citizens participation in a new economical plan for example. This is a good opportunity to promote my name not by positions but because of interesting ideas,” Goguadze says.
“Politics is more responsible for people’s lives. If I am ever in such a position I’ll regard it like business. I’ll never be a politician as you need special education and you must have some kind of leader’s ambition,” David Kakabadze, Director of Informational Technologies and Risk Management, says.
“I spent 15 years in business. At first I started as a founder of restaurant Europe in 1993. It was creative work and helped me to please customers. I was in this business for five years. I happened to live abroad because of family reasons. There I saw the example of apartments made by people. Then the idea came to my mind to create a developing business. After that, for all of 10 years I was in the construction business,” Rusudan Kervalishvili, Vice Speaker of Parliament, told The FINANCIAL.
“I had more of a preference for social problems which are dangerous for business. Because of the developed economical and social cataclysms in the country it was hard for me to keep the balance between charity and business. I had more of an interest in social activities. Politics helped me to collect some practical skills in developing and solving social problems,” Kervalishvili declared.
“When you spend a long time at your work, and abandon a lot of things you later try to find time to fulfil the gap. At my job I was the official face of the company and each step influenced my image. I can’t say at which age I’ll give up this job, as I’m still too young,” Kakabadze says.
“Choosing a second career first of all depends on your age. If we take the case of a 40 year old, like Butskhrikidze for example, I think you’ll take a short break, gather your resources, and start up your private business. 40 years of age is a very good time to stay at home and continue your life like a pensioner,” Kakabadze noted.
“Another option is that you’ll start working somewhere else, but this is less likely. The question is why you left your job if you still wanted to work as a hired person. What’s more realistic is starting your private business,” Kakabadze stated.
“I was in the energy business, including management and regulatory consulting for over 25 years. I changed careers when the opportunity presented itself to co-found and run the Georgian American University (GAU),” Cowgill declared.
“As for personal characters in this current economic climate for a businessman what’s most important is to be flexible and communicative,” Cowgill says.
When you retire from your business what’s most difficult is to find the right person to take your place. Neither Kervalishvili nor Goguadze faced this problem.
“People’s Bank was created by me. It went on an orbit and didn’t need me as a satellite any more. I thought much before leaving the business. And I think that we can make a lot of things to encourage business from a legislative point of view,” Goguadze says.
“I was happy to transfer my business to my sister. More than that, as I already mentioned, she had stronger business abilities than me,” Kervalishvili says.
“In People’s Bank I was not only a manager I was also a leader. A manager can be assigned but a leader is elected. For a leader it’s important to be an example not only at work but also in your private life. Of course I had to deny myself a lot of things so that I could become an example for my team. I won’t name all the things in my private life that I had to postpone as it’s a long list,” Goguadze noted.
“I had to deny myself everything to reach success. My greatest problem is not having enough time. I often had to postpone things for the future,” Kervalishvili declared.
“Managing GAU and trying to make a difference in educating youth is so rewarding because of doing something that is beneficial to society. My current plan is to stay at GAU as long as I can so as to have a positive impact on the organization,” Cowgill noted.
“I’m going to stay in politics as long as it needs me. If we arrange business this way, then as soon as I’m not useful I’ll go fishing,” says Goguadze, MP.
“I will continue my work where my country needs me most. If it will be down to my choice solely, I’d be glad for my country not to need me anymore,” Kervalishvili says.
“If I get an opportunity I would like to visit holy places,” Kervalishvili added.
“Actually you can’t say where you will continue your work in the future. According to my first profession I am a doctor,” Kervalishvili says.
Written By Madona Gasanova