Dear friends!

Allow us to congratulate you on the long-awaited arrival of spring, which has brought sunshine and blue skies to the city and the thought of ​​a short working week warms us and fills our thoughts with energy for professional achievements!

The winter season at SPIBA is now over, and we have the pleasure of presenting you the results of our activities over the past month!

The success of any business depends on the activity and the ability of its staff to achieve results and contribute to its development. The best way to help a person improve his talents is to find him a role to fulfill where these talents will be in demand. Together with the Advanced Management Institute on February 4 we conducted an interactive workshop on talent management. Margarita Adayeva-Datskaya, President of AMI, spoke about the different kinds of talent, competency management and methods of human development within the company.

On Tuesday, February 5, SPIBA in partnership with ANCOR recruitment held a logistics business breakfast, during which participants discussed the trends and prospects of the logistics business in 2013, summed up the results of 2012 and shared their experiences in an informal friendly dialogue. The event was attended by managers of logistics at major manufacturing and trading companies in St. Petersburg, key employees at freight forwarders, shipping lines, customs brokers, 3PL-providers and other key players in the logistics market of the North-West.

The Committee on Environment, Health and Safety invited SPIBA members to participate in a meeting of the management of the State Labour Inspectorate in the Leningrad region. At the meeting, representatives of the inspectorate presented statistics on accidents for the year 2012, discussed issues of work places certification and broached the subject of compensation and benefits.

On February 7, 2013, the State Palace of Congresses Complex met with SPIBA Members’ in the traditional “Winter meetings at Constantine palace” format. During the visit, guests viewed the “Secrets of St. Petersburg” exhibition featuring the Naryshkins’ treasure, and were presented with a new brochure in English about the tourist and business potential of the State Complex. The evening was rounded with informal discussions and socializing at the Baltic Star hotel.

The HR Committee of SPIBA together with Professional HR-Club on February 8 conducted a session on “Training of production personnel to employer’s standard. Dual training.” At the first part of the event, the topic was examined by Oleg Uklechev, Head of the Training Center for training and retraining of specialists for the automotive industry (Kaluga). Oleg spoke about the unique experience of creating a training center, the main aim of which is to prepare professionals to lead the automotive industry of the Kaluga region, such as “Volkswagen Group Rus” LLC, “PSMA Rus’ and others. At present, the Training Center trains specialists for dozens of companies from the automobile industry (including suppliers of automotive components), as well as companies in other industries. The Center conducts training, retraining and professional development and provides additional training for many general industrial occupations of high demand. In the second part of the meeting, participants learnt about the experiences of German companies in the field of dual education during a presentation by Anton Rassadin, Manager, Public & Government Relations of “BSH Bytowije Pribory”. The event aroused great interest among production companies, which speaks volumes about the actual problems of recruitment and training of operating personnel and the need to create conditions for the development of dual training in St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region.

The SPIBA Committee on Legislation and Lobbying started 2013 with renewal, with the introduction of new faces and new ideas from the newly elected co-chairs of the Committee. Following an intensive election campaign for the Committee, Irina Fedorova, Government Relations Deputy Director, Baltika Breweries, was elected, along with Igor Gorokhov, Senior Associate, Capital Legal Services and Arina Dovzhenko, Associate at St. Petersburg’s legal practice, Salans. We congratulate the winners and wish them success on the Committee! On February 12, we held a meeting of the Committee on the latest changes to civil law, the tax code and the legislation on real estate.

On February 20 the now traditional “Breakfast with the Director” was attended by Oleg Bokov, General Director of Heineken Brewery. Practical experience in implementing Total Productive Management raised a great deal of interest among representatives from manufacturing and logistics companies. Representatives of consulting businesses also took a great interest in hearing about the stages of this huge project, the difficulties encountered in the process, and how company Heineken overcame them. We thank Oleg for his excellent presentation and for one more vivid and memorable story that has become part of our project “Breakfast with the director!”

On February 26 we conducted a master-class on customer focus with a professor of the Marketing Department of Graduate School of Management, David I. Barkan. During the workshop, participants were coached in ways to improve ‘value for customer’ – this should be the focal point of all sales’ strategies, where a focus on customers’ needs and interests is central and defines market competition.

During the event “Russian and English jurisdictions: effective use of capabilities of various legal systems for protecting client interests” lawyers from companies –SPIBA members got involved in this fascinating discussion, in which they were able to learn the point of view of English lawyers from Eversheds LLP on the Berezovsky vs Abramovich case and many other widely publicized cases between Russian companies and businessmen that have been examined by English courts in the recent past. The pros and cons of protecting the interests of business in Russia and the UK were also discussed at the event.

The Finance Committee of SPIBA on February 27 organized a meeting on the changes in IFRS. The presentation was made by a partner at Deloitte and Touche CIS, Michail Raikhman and was dedicated to the existing standards in the Russian Federation, according to which the companies must submit their reports in 2013, as well as to thestandards being planned and developed and the possible consequences of their introduction to the business.

And now, some of the plans for March! We invite you to a conference on corporate social responsibility on March 12, will be glad to see top managers of SPIBA members companies at the SPIBA General Meeting on March 26, and PR professionals on “Press Conference Vice Versa!” See you soon!