Heavy industry for many years served as the basis of production of the socialist countries. After the fall of the Iron Curtain, technologically obsolete, not meeting Western standards factories were falling, were privatized and transformed. The extensive restructuring made thousands of people lose their jobs, however, it proved to be a necessary step in order to repair, damaged by the communist economic ideas, budgets of countries located in the former Soviet sphere of influence. Today, the situation of companies – leaders in specific sectors of heavy industry is very different: modern, well – organized workplaces strictly comply with the EU requirements for the requirements for environmental protection and management of production, obtain the most prestigious certificates including quality management systems, and ensure the highest quality products and services. There was a demand for the companies, able to skillfully manage the wealth of nature. The world economy is based on trade of, shrinking rapidly, natural resources, for which, despite the ability to use alternative energy sources, requirement is growing steadily. Thus, an enormous competition in the sector, very high entry costs, a huge responsibility upon the industry’s largest organizations. Today, in the area of heavy industry, operate only the best, most competent, because here there is no room for error.
Presentation of the company
Barter S.A. has achieved the leading position in its industry in just ten years of activity. Unlike many other organizations created in the nineties of last century, Barter had no support of foreign investment, free know – how and many years of experience of foreign shareholders. Barter S.A. is one hundred percent Polish capital, Polish ingenuity and entrepreneurship. Hard work, consistently implemented development strategy, and the invaluable ability to draw correct conclusions and instantly react to any situation: these are the pillars of success of an organization that in less than a decade became the largest in Poland and one of Europe’s largest importer and distributor of propane, butane, mixtures of propane - butane, coal, fertilizers and technical salt. One hundred and ninety fifth place on the list of five hundred largest companies in Poland in 2009, according to one of the most prestigious Polish journals, “Polityka”, is the best indicator of the company’s position on the European market. Especially that this indicator has improved by no less than twenty five places, in relation to the position that the company occupied in 2008.
To keep the balance
A short presentation of the organization does not indicate distinctive features of the company. At first glance, Barter S.A. does not stand out from other, globally operating competing firms. But not without reason, in the introduction of this article, a phrase “the greatest of the great” was used. So what makes that Barter S.A. has the right to call itself an industry leader ? Certainly, not the revenue value, though it is impressive: 654 million zlotys last year. Even the most strictly adhered quality standards, a very wide range of products and services, excellent approach to its own Employees, treating the care for the environment as one of major priorities in the hierarchy of goals of the organization and the policy of social responsibility, conducted by the company – Barter’s values, although perfectly executed, building the fame of the organization – the reasons of pride of the company’s owners, are not enough to call Barter S.A. a leader. The secret lies in the management philosophy, which briefly can be described in two words – “balance keeping.” Adherence to this philosophy, referred to below, and ability to merge it with the previously mentioned factors helped Barter to achieve a very high level of business acumen and, therefore, occupy the position of the best of the biggest in the industry. The motto to “keep the balance” refers primarily to the issue of the approach to the company’s Customer. Large companies, because of the scale of their activity, lose the direct contact with the Client, and because of that fact, dangerous mistakes may appear. Mistakes in planning, Customer service procedures, monitoring changes in the market, etc. One could say that with increasing scale of turnover, the distance between the company and the Client rises. There is a tendency to standardize the Customer service processes, while, characteristic to the micro and small organizations, recognition of individual requirements of the Recipient, and adjusting contracts to personal demands, passes away with the growth of the company. Barter S.A. is the leader among similar companies, because it has diagnosed this phenomenon early enough and, despite rapid development over the decade, was always guided by the desire to fully satisfy only one Client – the one, who places an order at the particular moment. The firm, thus the name of the company Barter S.A., means itself a lot: the highest quality products and services, unwavering reputation, respect and trust of thousands individual and institutional Customers. But for managing the organization, and maintaining contacts with the Clients, the Employees are responsible. Barter S.A. employs over five hundred, well – prepared for their tasks Employees. Caring for them is an absolute priority of the company. Extensive system of training, excellent working conditions, limitless promotion opportunities, are the expression of faith in the company’s another motto, that people are most important in the organization. Barter S.A. also provides its Employees with an extensive social package, including financial allowances and sports activities’ funding. It is also an expression of commitment of the company in a socially responsible activities: Barter S.A. supports Orphanages and welfare institutions, such as the Association of Family Assistance “Droga”, providing it with food parcels, clothing and fuel. Thanks to the responsible approach to their Employees, the company was awarded “Reliable Employer” prize in 2009, finally confirming their image of the perfect workplace. Caring for Employees and their safety translates into professionalism in customer service. Each Recipient is treated exceptionally, and therefore the company’s tens of thousands of Customers every day renew their orders, knowing that Barter S.A. is a guarantee of not only the highest standards of products and services, but also in touch with other people. Barter S.A. means also a huge diversity of product range. Among the company’s Clients are both powerful manufacturers, as well as individuals. As the largest distributor of LPG in Poland, the organization meets every demand for its product and takes care for its Recipients, including after – sale services. Continuously expanded network of representatives and logistics, including its own trans – shipment terminal in Sokółka, vast fleet of cars, over one hundred LPG stations owned by the company, several thousand points of cylinder selling, its own railway sidings, four modern centres of distribution and storage of LPG and rail terminals selling coal, equipped with technologically advanced, specialized devices, provide perfect flexibility and timeliness of the best raw materials supplies of LPG and coal from the gas refineries in Russia and Central Europe, and Russian and Kazakh mines. The highest quality product goes hand in hand with the full involvement of Employees in order to achieve the key objective of the company: total Customer satisfaction. All these activities are also subject to the principle of inviolability of the natural environment. Prestigious certificates, obtained by Barter S.A., stand guard on this principle: the Integrated Management System include the requirements of the two systems: Quality Management in accordance with ISO 9000:2000 and Environmental Management, in accordance with the standard 14001:2004. In addition, Barter S.A. requires the highest standards also from its Suppliers, and multimillion investments, aimed at continuous improvement of the company’s infrastructure, are the expression of the deepest commitment to the issue of care for the environment and Consumers.
Barter S.A. CEO, Mr. Bogdan Rogaski, may be proud. The future of his organizations seems bright, and it is only a matter of time, before the company expands into foreign markets. Wisely managed company is already a success of its Employees, and the company, which is characterized with very mature business philosophy, is a double success. Barter S.A. is on track to make its dreams come true.
Written by Jacek Głowacki