Hristina Petrova, Sales Manager “Air-Conditioning Systems”, Samsung Electronics Bulgaria: The Most Important Goal of Leadership Is to Create New Leaders
Hristina Petrova has an EMBA degree from the American University in Bulgaria. She also holds a Master’s degree in International Economic Relations - Management of International Projects from UNWE and a Master’s degree in Business Administration and a Bachelor’s degree in Pedagogy from Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski". Hristina Petrova has 14 years of experience in the business of air-conditioning systems. She has been responsible for the market of air-conditioning systems in the Bulgarian branch of the tech giant Samsung Electronics for over four years. Hristina tells more about her professional experience in an interview for "The Woman Is", a special edition of the "Manager" magazine.
Ms. Petrova, should we look for differences between female and male managers? Are there male and female styles of management and which one is more effective?
The effective management style is a combination of male and female management skills depending on the particular situation. Leadership is a constant process of proving your abilities to yourself and to others; its most important goal is to create new leaders. Leadership is best achieved through personal example that inspires people to outperform themselves and develop their personal qualities.
What is the woman leader that you admire and that inspires you?
Some time ago I read Iris Bohnet’s book “What Works: Gender Equality by Design”. She helped me understand some stereotypes when it comes to gender inequality and the way such stereotypes determine to a large extent the lives of millions of people around the world. The book is quite inspirational and offers concrete solutions to overcoming issues connected to gender inequality in different situations. I also sincerely admire Sheryl Sandberg for supporting women on the road to success. I keep on asking her favorite question: "What would you do if you were not afraid?”
If you had the chance to change one single thing that would improve the prospects for all women in Bulgaria, what would it be?
I’d boost financing for education because change starts with knowledge. It worries me that the state does not take sufficient care of the disadvantaged. Unfortunately, smart and talented girls and boys do not always have the opportunity to acquire a higher education degree. I believe educated women are women of promise- strong, independent, caring for people around them and with a strong sense of social responsibility. These qualities are a prerequisite for the long-term stable development of a nation.
HRISTINA PETROVA ANSWERS TO:
Do you believe in the Lehman Sisters Hypothesis*?
Having both men and women taking important decisions reduces the number and severity of business failures. The balance between men and women in the workplace is of great importance because both sides contribute to the development and stability of the company in the long-term.
* According to the Lehman Sisters Hypothesis, well-known bank failures (such as the collapse of Lehman Brothers) would not have happened if there were more women in leadership.
What is the stereotype that you most often need to fight?
That women are not good in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). I cannot and will not agree with people who say that. I know wonderful ladies that are exceptional engineers. I myself walked a long and difficult way until I earned recognition in an area that is run by at least 95 per cent men.
The most important thing is to never give up and never lose faith – faith precedes success!
ABOUT THE COMPANY
Following the launch of its first air-conditioning system in 1974, Samsung quickly broadened its global impact in the segment. Thanks to its rapid growth and in support of its long-term commitment to the European market, Samsung founded Samsung Electronics Air Conditioner Europe B.V. (SEACE) in Amsterdam in 2017. This dedicated headquarters in Europe aims to sell in over 30 European countries. SEACE offers a number of technical trainings in the fields of air conditioning solutions and the construction of "smart" post-sale services and technical support to its partners.