Sun | 01.10.2017
Meet Elena Badea, Managing Parter at Valoria and an expert with over 15 years of experience in Branding, Marketing and Communication.
1. Dear Elena, please introduce yourself shortly to our members.
I am fortunate. My passion has been my profession. I am an expert in Branding, Marketing and Communication. So, I haven’t worked a day in my entire life, which (some people say) is rare and quite exceptional. Besides marketing, I am passionate about business development. So, I help companies turn the potential of their people into value, as a trainer, mentor and executive coach.
2. After more than 15 years of working for one of the Big 4, you decided to become an entrepreneur. That is quite a change. What motivated you and how hard it was?
My main motivation to become an entrepreneur stemmed from the aspiration to share from my knowledge and experience to other entrepreneurs. There are many initiatives that provide acces to entrepreneurs to a wide array of business knowledge, but not so many in marketing & business development. That is why, I decided to set up a company – VALORIA – to do just that. The switch from the corporate life to entrepreneurship was not as hard as it could get, because I prepared myself 3 years for this change. This period of time allowed me to test my idea, pilot it and put everything in place as thoroughly as possible.
3. The entrepreneurial journey is not an easy one. What would be your main advice for a young entrepreneur?
As a mentor in two mentorship programs for entrepreneurs, I am in close contact with many young people who start up a company. Let me tell you that I admire many of them for their vision and courage. In this context, my advice to them is always like this: (1) work on yourself to broaden your business perspective, (2) build up your resilience and determination, (3) have a plan for your business and for your life. I love how Jim Rohn puts it: “If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”
4. Executive branding, Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning, Visual content marketing and Experiential Marketing are some of the most important B2B marketing trends in 2017. How do you see them integrated in the Romanian market?
At Valoria we conduct surveys to measure to what extent the global trends are reflected in the local market. The findings of our surveys show that Romanian companies are not following the global trends in B2B marketing. Many companies are rather simplistic in their approach of marketing and apply just basic marketing tactics. Of course, there are leading companies which tap into the full potential of the latest marketing tools and technology, but that’s not the general rule in the domestic business environment.
5. „I believe in people and in their power to change themselves and the world”. This is your statement on LinkedIn. How is that translated in your business strategy?
Valoria is a for profit business, but at the same time is a vehicle which allows me to set up initiatives which will help companies and people develop and grow. We are just at the beginning and at this moment our main contribution to the development of the local business environment consist of our surveys, as well as our involvement in educational and mentorship programs. More initiatives will follow in 2018.
6. You are also involved in the master program of Griffiths School of Management from Oradea, so you are actively contributing to shaping the next generation of young Romanian managers. Tell us more about this experience.
I have been teaching at the Griffiths School of Management from Oradea since 2009. The interaction with the students there is always challenging and refreshing. At Griffiths School, they have a mission to develop entrepreneurs. So, it’s very heath warming to see that year after year, the business of the alumni grow and flourish in many cities of the country.
7. Speaking more about the future– what are your plans with Valoria?
Our plans include growing our team, setting up a marketing academy and developing a comprehensive set of courses for effective managers.
8. Because we are the Dutch Chamber - what do you like most about the Netherlands?
My first visit to the Netherlands was in 2009 and we drove across Europe to go there. It was a fantastic experience and I will never forget the feeling of excitement when, from the car, I saw the first windmill in the middle of a green field. Since then, I had the chance to travel many times to the Netherlands and I like the vision of the Dutch people, their determination and the firm grounding they have in their national values.
9. And in the end, please a thought for the NRCC members.
Some people say that great business is about more than guts and opportunity. I say that great things are always done by people coming together and sharing their knowledge, passion and the vision of a better world. And that’s exactly what NRCC, as an association, provides to the members. For me and my company, Valoria, it’s a priviledge to be part of NRCC!