We are accelerating development in every aspect of our business.

Sanela Vezir, Division Manager at Nelt BiH, gave an interview with InStore magazine last month. The conversation is presented in its entirety below.

Sanela Vezir started working at Nelt in 2012 as a Sales Analyst. It was her first “real” job after finishing college. At that time, Nelt BiH had about 80 employees, and she was very grateful for the opportunity to work, learn, and demonstrate her qualities, abilities, and work habits.

Soon after, she was promoted to the position of Key Account Manager, through which she received training, knowledge, and the opportunity to improve her sales and negotiation skills. Over the next five years, she experienced dynamic changes in positions, primarily in terms of business responsibilities and authorities. The experience and knowledge she gained in those positions were invaluable to her. Today, because of that knowledge and experience, she truly enjoys the work and tasks she performs as Division Manager.

To learn more about being part of a successful company that sets standards in business processes in this segment and constantly improves its operations, read on.

First, please introduce us to your position at Nelt. How responsible and demanding is the job of Division Manager?

We are primarily a distribution company that operates with a large number of principals and represents numerous international and domestic brands in BiH. We are expected to be fully committed to every job, which requires appropriate human and time resources.

The distribution sector at Nelt BiH is grouped into two sales organizations, or divisions. My team and I are responsible for one – for principals, i.e., companies whose brands we represent in the market, as well as for customers to whom we distribute products from our portfolio.

In order to build successful long-term business relationships in the best possible way, one of the most important aspects of our business is the motivation, efficiency, and effectiveness of our colleagues. In that sense, we invest the most time in developing people, internal processes, and procedures, resulting in constant improvement of business at all levels of the organization.

Based on the above, I can say that I have a very dynamic and responsible position where no two days are the same. I always see room to do something better or faster, differently, and that is the greatest charm of this position.

You’ve been with Nelt for ten years. Can you compare your professional growth and the positions you previously held?

I started working at Nelt in 2012 as a Sales Analyst. It was my first “real” job after college. At that time, Nelt BiH had about 80 employees, and I was very grateful for the opportunity to work, learn, and demonstrate my qualities, abilities, and work habits. Soon after, I was promoted to the position of Key Account Manager, through which I received training, knowledge, and the opportunity to improve my sales and negotiation skills. Over the next five years, I had very dynamic changes in positions, primarily in terms of business responsibilities and authorities.

The experience and knowledge I gained in those positions are invaluable to me. Today, because of that knowledge and experience, I truly enjoy the work and tasks I perform as Division Manager. However, the key links in my professional development are the people I work with, from superiors who have always provided knowledge and motivation to other colleagues who have provided selfless support and assistance in all tasks and situations.

Today, I strive to give back by sharing knowledge and supporting colleagues whenever the opportunity arises. The job is responsible and very dynamic. The fact that we are a distributor and that we work in the fast-moving consumer goods industry implies that the job is demanding because the market is alive, constantly changing, with new trends and changes to which we need to adapt as a system and as individuals within that system.

Nelt Group is synonymous with a successful business system with 4,350 employees, operating in 12 markets and two continents. What are the benefits of working in such an environment?

The security and stability provided by Nelt Group to its employees are the greatest benefits, resulting in everyone seeing Nelt as a company they want to work for in the long term. This is confirmed by the fact that the majority of employees at Nelt BiH have been with the company for 5 to 20 years. The diversity of markets in which we operate in distribution and logistics provides a wealth of knowledge and experiences that we share among ourselves.

In addition to distributing goods and providing logistics services, Nelt develops and builds the food production sector and produces advertising materials. We are proud owners of Banim reklama, Neoplanta Novi Sad, and a Baby Food Factory that expands its Nutrino portfolio into the healthy food segment, following the trends of fast-paced lifestyles and increasing demand and awareness of healthy living habits. Another benefit is certainly the activities of other markets in which Nelt Group operates, which always represent an opportunity for business improvement and expanding knowledge in various fields.

In exceptionally challenging times in which you operate, especially considering the last two years, you have demonstrated the power of quick adaptation and constant improvement regardless of circumstances. Is your good performance a result of this?

It can be said that it is partly so. Today, when I look back on that period, I am very proud of how quickly we responded to new circumstances and new working principles that were imposed on us in a short period during the pandemic. We can proudly say that we never interrupted the supply to the market and customers of the goods we distribute, while constantly taking care of the health and safety of our employees.

Nelt’s good performance is the result of the work of people within our organization, and we truly attribute success to our employees. We live and implement our corporate values in every segment and opportunity, and that is what makes us successful. Our organizational culture is based on caring for people, long-term perspective, a winning mentality, innovation, and personal responsibility.

You adopted the three-year strategy Accelerate 2025 at the end of March, focusing on a healthy organization, corporate values, infrastructure, and technology. Tell us more about that?

When I joined Nelt, the Strategy 2020 was current. It implied the growth of Nelt Group in the distribution and logistics segments, which were supposed to provide revenue of one billion euros. We achieved that growth.

With the new strategy Accelerate 2025, as the name itself suggests, we want to accelerate our development in every segment of business, primarily by caring for the organizational health and strengthening Nelt’s corporate values. As I mentioned earlier, we truly believe that our employees and organization are the key to success, so we invest a lot of attention and time in motivating the organization.

Through various benefits, projects, and trainings, we provide each individual with the opportunity to work on their development and improvement of skills and knowledge. In order to keep up with the growth and needs of our principals in each market, we invest in infrastructure and the development of logistics operations to best meet the needs and tasks. For us, this year is all about technology, digitalization, and process automation in distribution and logistics, which should result in improved collaboration with our partners. We want to be innovative and have the best solutions for business processes, and we are currently intensively working on implementing digital delivery notes in the BiH market.

What are all the conditions necessary to achieve such a strategy, and how demanding is the implementation in the various markets where Nelt Group operates?

Investing in people, infrastructure, and technology are prerequisites for achieving strategic goals. We believe in “acceleration” because it clearly communicates a long-term perspective through innovation, which are our corporate values.

We implement the strategy in phases across markets, and each market under the “Accelerate” strategy has its tasks and projects tailored to the needs, opportunities, and capabilities of each member of the Nelt Group.

What are the main drivers of Nelt Group’s growth?

The biggest driver is the development of distribution and logistics services. We achieve growth mainly by improving cooperation with existing principals and clients and by establishing new partnerships. We continuously work on introducing new and improving existing services, developing manufacturing activities and our brands, establishing new partnerships, and expanding to other markets.

You are particularly focused on sustainable business, and that is what all companies should strive for. What is the basis of the long-term sustainability of your company?

Today’s good results of Nelt are based on the responsibility and trust that the company has built over 30 years of dedicated and professional work. We want to continue in the same direction. Sustainability for us means responsibility towards employees, the market, the local community, and the environment.

For us at Nelt, people are the most important. The success of the company is achieved by good and motivated staff. Therefore, Nelt aims to employ, develop, and retain people with potential, as well as to create a pleasant and stimulating work environment that will inspire employees in their daily work.

The activities we conduct in the local community are aimed at establishing strategic partnerships with faculties, through acquainting students with the real sector, practical application of what they have learned, and organizing specialized programs for talented students. We actively participate in various humanitarian actions and socially responsible investments that we carry out independently, with partners, or with the community.

We consider environmental protection as our long-term strategic direction. We continuously improve the environmental management system. In this area, we have defined priorities. These include, above all, the rational use of natural resources, as well as the use of technology, equipment, and materials that reduce harmful effects on the environment. Considering our primary impacts achieved through transportation, we have implemented a series of initiatives to reduce harmful emissions. We pay special attention to waste management and promote this topic within and outside our organization.