Background information of NE
Name & surname: Orestis Angouridakis
Sector of activity: Wood Industry
Name of business: Angouridakis – CRETAN HANDMADE
Background information of HE
Name & surname: Tinja Krajnc
Sector of activity: Wood Industry
Experience in running a business: 6 years
Name of business/website: Tina Krajnc s.p. / https://moi-style.com/en/
Period of Relationship: 05/08/2019 – 30/11/2019
Duration of Relationship: 4 months
Which skills did Tinja Krajnc improve by passing on her knowledge and giving support to New Entrepreneur Orestis Angouridakis?
This exchange programme involved two ambitious persons from Slovenia and Greece, who share a thorough professional passion for the production and marketing of wooden products – the sector on which they focus their entrepreneurial activities. The technical expertise and entrepreneurial skills of Tina (HE) were the basis for hosting Orestis (NE), who travelled to Slovenia from Greece in order to learn, for instance, how to safely operate with laser engraving machines in the field of wood processing and wood cutting. Enhancing such skills is a rather difficult task unless one is able to get a concrete ‘hands-on’ experience by working on the existing production lines, thereby learning how to operate on CNC (computer numerical control) wood cutting machines, and, finally, designing a clear market plan for the commercialization of manufactured wood products.
In the first part of the programme, NE was introduced to the HE’s working environment (tools, machinery, processes, supply chain). Subsequently, he focused on the existing production line and learned how to safely operate a CNC wood cutting machine. HE and NE together assessed available wood processing methods, as well as marketing and commercial strategies by means of a “SWOT” analysis. During the last period, HE and NE worked on the front end of the company’s shop and collected valuable feedback from ordinary customers. Based on the performed activities and thanks the customers’ feedback, they managed to get a clear idea about how to achieve overall improvements, e.g. by applying some modifications on new products and commercializing them accordingly.
Benefits have been achieved on different levels. First, working together for 6 months resulted in being a rewarding professional experience for both entrepreneurs. Second, the experience was successful on a business level: the exchange programme ended with a cooperation aimed at designing wood products and finding the most appropriate marketing solutions to commercialise them (including e-commerce solutions such as Search Engine Optimization; Search Engine Marketing; Social Media Marketing). Both entrepreneurs gained further confidence in operating in a multicultural context, and were successful in upgrading their know-how in the relevant sector(s). Their effort set the path for a future cooperation on new business ventures with novel market opportunities on the horizon. Finally, as a HE Tina obtained new insights on how to achieve success on an international level, and valuable feedbacks on how to internationalise her business by entering the Greek market.
Tina Krajnc: “I am fully satisfied with the choice made to operate as a HE for a committed and reliable person as Orestis is. It gave me a unique opportunity to enhance my communication and soft skills by supporting Orestis and passing my knowledge on to him – something that I now consider as a very rewarding experience. At the same time, while supporting Orestis in performing his daily activities, I was lucky enough to further improve my skills in assessing diverse wood processing methods as well as strengthen my networking, managerial and marketing knowledge in this field.”
Orestis Angouridakis: “I am grateful to Tina for hosting me. Embarking on the OPEN-EYE programme with her, I had the possibility to learn the technical and business skills and at the same time improve my entrepreneurial competencies under such stimulating environment. Tina proved to be a great mentor, she taught me how to operate on CNC wood cutting machines, conceive and design new wood products, commercialise them by means of new channels. She supported me professionally while interacting with final customers of finished products. This was an ideal experience – precisely what I was looking for. I feel lucky for having been involved on this programme in a country with rich wood tradition and wood crafting culture as is Slovenia.”