How to be a ‘Rising Star’ at ECOMMBX

Angelis Zittis, Marketing Manager and Vahid Bassett, Corporate Units Junior Director, ECOMMBX recently spoke to GOLD as part of the magazine’s September cover story, showcasing the ‘Rising Stars’ on Cyprus’ business scene.

As with the other rising stars, Zittis and Basset were selected on the basis of their age (25-35) in response to a request for companies in a range of sectors to put forward employees that, while already proving to be successful, also have the potential to thrive further in their future careers. Read on to discover the secrets of Zittis and Bassett’s success.

Angelis Zittis: Age: 32

Vahid Bassett: Age: 35

A.Z.: Position in Company: Marketing Manager

V.B.: Position in Company: Corporate Units Junior Director

Both: Hobbies/Interests: Gaming, football, adventure, motorbikes

Both: An international entrepreneur/company I admire: Google

What are the skills and character traits which, you believe, have led to your present success? What special qualities does a young professional wishing to move up the career ladder need to develop?

A.Z.: Let’s not sugarcoat the situation. ECOMMBX is a great place to work but you can’t expect to be rewarded without working hard.

V.B.: And whoever thinks he can succeed alone is mistaken. Success is a team sport. You have to be able to work with others, to respect, discuss and resolve differences of opinion. We challenge each other, we often argue but, ultimately, we learn from each other.

A.Z.: Yes! Vahid isn’t easy to please. He’ll keep pushing me to do better.

V.B.: And Angelis will tell me when I’ve gone too far... But we both know that when the company does well, we all do well.

What are the biggest challenges that you have had to deal with in your career so far?

A.Z.: Finding a job that is both satisfying and rewarding was the greatest challenge. On the other hand, like many young professionals, I too started off believing that I had all the answers. But once you actually get to work, you quickly learn to eat some humble pie. No, we don’t know it all from day one. And even if we did, in our rapidly changing world, everything we know will probably change on day two! It takes a certain maturity to put aside our initial over-confidence and replace it with a desire to learn from others.

Age diversity in the workforce is currently said to be the greatest it has ever been. In your opinion, is a multi-generational environment beneficial or challenging to millennial professionals?

V.B.: Definitely beneficial – provided we know how to tap into each other’s strengths. The fintech sector is very young and becoming increasingly automated but to optimise automated processes, you have to first understand the process in every detail. That is where our colleagues who know the manual processes inside-out can help us design automated processes and user instructions that are both streamlined and customer-friendly.

How important do you consider corporate wellness and to what extent do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?

A.Z.: ECOMMBX’s 4-day working week says it all: although we work ‘only’ four days a week, our productivity has actually increased. Initially the 4-day week was based on increasing the number of hours per day, to compensate for the fifth day, and our productivity was monitored – with astounding results. Now we are no longer required to extend our working hours. Our whole mindset has changed. We don’t look at the time. We work towards results.

V.B.: Quite often we’ll work till very late but if the job is done, and done well, that’s all that matters. And we can then enjoy our extended leisure time even more. That is the definition of work-life balance. It’s a win-win situation for the company and for the individuals.

What are your professional short- or long-term goals?

V.B.: Everyone wants a high-flying career. The question is how we hope to achieve that. We both believe that lifelong learning is the way to go. Learning – whether through knowledge or on-the-job experience – may not have an immediate impact on our career but it is never lost. At some point, it will give us that boost to the next level, the next opportunity.

This interview first appeared in the September edition of GOLD magazine. Click here to view it.

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