We are witnessing a deprofessionalization of human energy capital, the result of 20 years of lack of investment, and in vain we have ideas if we lack the people to implement them
Interview given by Mr. Corneliu Bodea, CEO of Adrem and President of CRE for investenergy.ro
Mr. Corneliu Bodea, after a difficult year, marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, do you think that in 2021 it will be easier or harder for the energy business?
I believe that 2021 brings important opportunities for economic reconstruction, including skipping some steps and recovering from the processes of modernization, digitization and innovation, through tools such as the Green Deal, which provides generous funding from the European Union. At the same time, securing financing will be a challenge, after 20 years in which no investments have been made, in which the foundations of a competitive energy market have not been laid – and we see that in the last two years Romania has become a net importer of energy – and in which human capital in the field has gradually become unprofessional. In order to capitalize on the opportunities offered by European funds, we need first of all a predictable, correct and coherent legislative framework that encourages investors and then concrete projects prepared by capable people to carry out the necessary studies, technical analyzes, to deal with design.
Last but not least, the energy sector is entering a process of energy transition with an outdated infrastructure, with few automations, low energy efficiency as is very clear from the fact that less than 15% of thermal energy is delivered in localities operating centralized supply systems. I think that 2021 can be a good year if policy makers will hurry to develop the legislative framework we talked about earlier, if they will encourage major entrepreneurial projects and start modernization work to increase both efficiency and competitiveness of Romania regionally.
The most important lessons learned in the pandemic… How has the pandemic changed the future?
The pandemic has shown us some important things at the societal, business and personal level. It gave us an opportunity for introspection, which, although forced by circumstances, was necessary for us to understand what is really important to us. We have learned to value health, family and jobs, the environment and last but not least all the things we consider to be given – freedom of movement, opportunities to participate in cultural events or to socialize. We understood as a society that we cannot do without each other, that we need a joint effort, solidarity and mutual help to overcome shocks. Businesses stopped abruptly in their pursuit of profit and faced the most important test in times of crisis: the confirmation of values. In the pandemic, we saw the businesses that really assumed the declared values and acted through their prism – those that put people’s health first, and at the business level, proved to be reliable partners, able to act responsibly, professionally and, last but not least, with openness and a desire to communicate.
If we focus on the business environment, the pandemic forces us to make some structural changes, which go from the way we work and reach the leadership style. In the group of companies I lead, Adrem, we conducted a survey among employees and about 70% of them want a hybrid work system in the future, which will allow them to combine remote work with office work. , which my management colleagues and I have to keep in mind. I think many businesses will make this transition in the longer term, which also involves rethinking workspaces, for example. At the same time, the leadership, which suffered during this period, can only be a collaborative one, which allows an exchange of ideas and a common construction, including with the employees, towards the assumed objectives. And last but not least, at the level of the business environment, there will still be a need to promote partnership, communication, responsibility and mutual support
From these perspectives, the pandemic offers us many opportunities that translate into that sustainable and responsible construction that we did not know how to reach. Now there is no other way.