Over one thousand participants representing the global business, central and local authorities, foreign and Polish journalists, three theme paths, 80 speakers, including Simon Sinek, who visited Poland for the first time. Participants in this year’s conference organized in Poznań by ABSL: “Poland. The place to grow,” were discussing the major trends in the modern business services sector, technology influencing sector in a positive way, the modern leadership, and how to attract the most talented employees. The conference was the largest event devoted to the modern business services sector in the Central and Eastern Europe.
Dynamic development, more employees
“Since 2016, employment in the modern business services sector in Poland has already grown by 30 per cent. Now, the sector holds nearly 280 thousand jobs. We anticipate that this figure will grow and will amount to approximately 340 thousand by 2020,” said Wojciech Popławski, Vice President of ABSL while presenting the annual report of the Association of Business Services Sector Leaders. “The fact that Poland is only second to the United States of America in terms of the number of workers employed by the parent companies of the sector only proves how willing foreign investors are to open their offices in our country,” he said.
The size of investments made by Polish cities over the recent years and the potential of highly qualified staff make international corporations increasingly frequently relocate here. “There is a number of reasons why Poznań is attractive for investors,” said Jacek Jaśkowiak, President of Poznań, the host of the ABSL conference of this year. “They include the perfect location of the city, its high economic potential and good infrastructure. In addition to a wide range of office premises, Poznań can also offer a business-friendly environment. Of course, no business can withstand without qualified staff and this is certainly not missing in Poznań, either” he said.
Jeremy Kelly, Director of Global Research at JLL, confirmed his words. “Innovativeness, good management and talents are the key factors that make Polish cities stand out from the others,” he said.
Quality, not just quantity
“Business centres that are located in Poland provide not only simple services, but rather increasingly complex processes consisting in particular in development of in-depth analyses that allow making strategic decisions,” – said Piotr Dziwok, the President of ABSL. “This only shows that global corporations appreciate our innovativeness and problem-solving ability” he added.
As the participants in the conference emphasized, use of modern technologies determines a company’s success to a considerable degree. “Nowadays we can observe a real revolution at business services centres which is happening, among other things, owing to employment of the artificial intelligence,” said Wojciech Popławski.
Despite fears, technological development has not brought reduction of jobs. “In accordance with our surveys, as much as 92 per cent of companies of the sector do not intend to cut down jobs due to emergence of new technologies. What’s more, they will need highly qualified staff representing appropriate knowledge and educational background who will be able to take actions on the basis of the state-of-the-art solutions,” said Janusz Dziurzyński, Vice President of ABSL.
Due to growing technological developments, business services centres increasingly highly value flexible workers who can adapt to ever-changing realities. “Willingness and ability to acquire new competencies are qualities that must be inbred in every employee since it is them that largely determine company’s success,” said Agnieszka Orłowska, ABSL’s Vice President for Talents.
Leadership in a modern company
In order to attract and keep talented experts, employers will increasingly often have to see to their needs. “For example, the individual approach that already comes as a standard in many companies manifests in diversification of the form of employment, which more and more frequently is adapted to employee’s needs,” she said.
Leadership and appropriate team management were also the topics of the speech given by Simon Sinek, world-famous lecturer and expert on leadership who was the special guest and keynote speaker of the conference. “The simple fact that someone is on the top of an organization does not make him the leader. There is something more to being a leader,” he said. “A leader must have a goal. Everybody needs a goal for their actions and needs to know why they should devote to a matter. Employees follow their leader who is aware of it. A leader must have the courage to take steps and implement the goal. A real leader can also create a team where people feel safe enough to admit their week points. Also, openness to changes is an important quality that determines leadership,” Simon Sinek said.
His words were confirmed by Maciej Borkowski, Vice President of ABSL. “For many companies, their organisational culture, which usually goes hand in hand with the management culture, is an impediment to digitalisation of processes. If an organization has a leader who is striving to implement modern solutions, the process runs much faster,” he said.
Poland. The place to grow. The conference in a snap shot
- 1,100 participants
- 360 companies
- 80 speakers
- 3 theme paths: Business and Markets, Technology, People
- 700 guests of events off the main agenda
- Dozens of media publications