Elite business group formed for top managers in Vietnam

The Vietnam Chapter of the world’s leading independent professional network for business executives was inaugurated this morning in a ceremony in Ho Chi Minh City’s District 1. The Executive Global Network Vietnam, Chaired by former EuroCham head Ms. Nicola Connolly sees Vietnam become the fifteenth nation to join EGN’s ranks.

“With membership of each group limited to 25 C-Level leaders, the group offers a level of exclusivity, knowledge and best practice sharing that cannot be rivaled by the other business groups in the city,” said EGN Vietnam Managing Director Nick Jonsson.

Mr. Jonsson went on to say that Vietnam’s reception has been overwhelming with all 25 seats for the first group already taken by companies including CBRE, Damco, BAT, Diageo, Siemens and Tetrapak among other leading firms.

“Each EGN group of executives will convene six times per year, with each meeting set around knowledge sharing based on the strictest confidentiality. No competitors sitting inside the same group and selling are NOT allowed among members – buying is!” he said.

EGN provides an experienced facilitator to run all aspects of the group and meetings. The group has its own website with contact data, calendar, documents, presentations and mail. The group sets the topics its members wish to focus on and develop. Topics covered can be shared strategic or operational challenges, latest trends in the members’ specific field and so forth. The work of the group uses its members’ own cases as the starting point. External speakers will regularly offer insight into areas where there is a desire to bring in outside expertise.

“EGN was founded in Denmark in 1992, and will celebrate its 25th anniversary with the entry of Vietnam into its ranks,” said Peter Arnoldi, CEO at EGN, SEA. “Around the world our members have benefited tremendously from being a part of the EGN Network. I was personally involved in setting up EGN in Singapore two years ago where we already have 340 members divided in 13 confidential groups. I am sure that EGN Vietnam will see a similar success and growth.

“EGN is set apart by two key factors,” Mr. Arnoldi continued. “Firstly, the fact that we accept only the most senior levels of management into our ranks, in an environment bound by confidentiality clauses ; and secondly, as we accept only one firm from any industry – there will never be issues then with competitive intelligence within EGN, offering valuable sounding boards for C-Level Executives here in Vietnam. In developing markets such as this, such an environment is utterly invaluable to us all.”

Founding member Mr Marco Civardi, Managing Director of Damco Vietnam, concurred, stating that the reason he she joined was the way in which he would be able to discuss his challenges with a confidential audience of his peers.

“Being responsible for 1,250 colleagues with a logistics footprint of 90,000 square meters I am facing challenges each day. As a member of the EGN network I can discuss and find solutions to these problems with peers at my level in a confidential environment,” he said.

Vietnam joins networks in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Holland, Belgium UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa on the EGN map.

Its next meeting will take place in January, with a focus on helping our members to find solutions to their challenges that they are facing. Examples of topics are The Challenge of Working with Distributors in Vietnam, Leadership Development: Building the Pipeline in Asia, Compliance in Asia: When is a Mooncake a Bribe?, Finance as Co-Pilot to the CEO, Performance Management – Measuring the Added-Value of Individuals and Teams, How to get managers to think strategically?, Preparing talent for future leadership, Outsourcing as a Solution to Employment Issues in Southeast Asia, Achieving a Work / Life Balance, Global Corporate Values vs. Local Laws and Regulations, How to organise sales function across multiple geographies and Positioning the corporate value proposition, Finding a Successor: The Challenges of Promotion and ASEAN’s future consumers: Their needs, aspirations and desire, Engaging Employees by Developing Leaders; not Bosses, Motivating diverse geographic, cultural and generational teams and Acquiring new customers and building new markets across Asia.

The group will meet thereafter every two months for the remainder of the year. In addition to physical get-togethers, the organization runs an extensive online community featuring forums, downloadable books and journals and searchable worldwide member databases. Members will further receive reciprocal access to EGNs in other nations, a key selling point to Vietnam’s rapidly integrating economy.

Membership for organisations seeking to join the second group that will be launched in early 2017 starts at US$2600 per year.