Though based in the small Polish village of Biskupice Podgórne near Wrocław for a short time, the Korean giant LG Electronics easily found its feet to business environment of the Wrocław region.
Following the signing of the investment agreement in January 2006, it didn’t take long for the producer to launch the assembly line in yet another LG manufacturing plant located in Poland. LG Electronics Wrocław currently takes the lead in manufacturing ultrathin LED monitors and high quality refrigerators, thus contributing to the promotion of the LG brand worldwide. Written by Marcin Zimny
Innovation through human potential
The orientation towards being a innovative producer of computer equipment and household appliances is, in broad terms, a widely recognized policy of LG Electronics. Based on the principles centred around people, the general business approach accounts for such values as good and efficient information flow between different layers of the company, e.g. directors, managers, staff. As Mr Jun Myeon Seong, President of LG Electronics Wrocław, emphasizes, this kind of policy is geared towards the problem recognition. “If we know nothing about the problem, it’s hard to speak of any improvement. Smugness is the biggest enemy of efficient management, but focusing on the goal helps to move mountains.” This adage, together with the story about a Chinese warrior who stayed so focused on shooting an arrow that it easily went through a rock, can be found in both the President’s office and corridor. The company’s management appears to be setting an excellent example to follow by all employees. When asked about the ramifications of the economic crisis, Mr Seong pointed out that recession could be taken as a challenge, which for such flexible company as LG, was not very difficult to face. The remedy is not beyond reach: if you are be able to respond to the customers’ needs accurately, there is no need to lay off people. What’s more, LG Electronics Wrocław perceives its employees as the greatest value, therefore it doesn’t even think of employment or salary reduction even as a measure of last resort, not to mention social benefits, which are here-to-stay bonuses for hard work. As the F1 advertising slogan sponsored by LG goes, “technology without people means nothing”. It’s taken very seriously and put into practice in the company’s day-to-day business. For instance, a lot of emphasis is being placed on family atmosphere, though the task is not so easy given the number of about 2000 employees. Nonetheless, managing directors of LG Electronics Wrocław are enthusiastic about creating a close-knit community at work, explaining that a goal-orientation can turn a seemingly intractable problem into a confidence-building experience. To bring people together LG Electronics Wrocław organizes once a month birthday parties for employees celebrating their birthday in a given month and family meetings during which people can get to know each other better, chat and have a good time after work. In order to make these events more entertaining other attractions are scheduled too. For example, during the first company’s picnic participants could witness, among other things, a fake kidnapping of company’s President. “Employees had to ransom their sheriff. Luckily for everybody and for the company’s future in particular, the transaction was successful,” recounts Monika Trojak, member of PR department in LG Electronics. “Such events are supposed to bring people together because they set mutual goals. It’s also important that our employees, regardless of the position occupied, have the same attitude to work with LG Electronics, which is to the benefit of everybody.” On the other hand, working with LG Electronics Wrocław doesn’t consist in having fun only. It seems that the company’s management knows it best, for it holds a series of face-to-face meetings during the week at which managers meet their subordinates and HR members meet shop floor employees. The aim of the meetings is to improve direct communication between managers and subordinates, discuss problematic issues in past relation, build mutual understanding, improve team performance and management skills through feedback from the team, get to know personal goals of team members and increase their motivation level. In addition to this, each week is rounded off with a meeting of the President with all employees. As the company assures, this is a great opportunity to discuss difficult and troublesome matters related to the general performance of the company and find solutions to them. The importance of improvement made to each and every aspect of the business is essential because it’s not only a great and attractive product that comes into play, but the whole manufacturing process is vital, as it has a profound influence on the quality of the end product. And obviously, the job cannot be done without contribution from fully satisfied and appropriately rewarded people.
It’s not hard to notice that social responsibility is not far from the LG Electronics Wrocław policy as well. President Seong stresses the significance of sound relations and good co-operation with local authorities, assuring that they are to the benefit of both the local community and company. LG Electronics Wrocław willingly engages in supporting regional schools, charity organizations and other public institutions as well as it also subsidizes the construction of the Formula One race track in Poland. Wrocław, the winner of a poll conducted by LG which is F1 global technological partner, has a lot to offer. “It is a beautiful and exceptional city for which hosting Grand Prix F1 will be a chance to promote both the capital of the Lower Silesia region and many other attractions of the area,” pointed out the President of LG Electronics Wrocław. The LG policy may, however, beg the question of why so widely recognized and popular products are worth buying. The answer can partly be found in the company’s advertising slogan: “Life’s good”. LG products are designed to take the customers up to the peak of their expectations by offering intelligent and comfortable solutions. This is also emphasized by the design of company’s logo: the letters “L” and “G” depicted in a circle symbolize the world, future, youth and sensitivity to human needs. In other words, the trademark unveils the LG policy aimed to foster close relations with customers around the globe. The manufacturer ensures that everyone will quickly appreciate this message after purchase of one of LG Electronics recent ultrathin and power-saving LED monitors from the W86L series, which set new trends in the design of monitors for home and office use. Thanks to cutting-edge LED technology, the W86L series monitors are only 20.5 millimeters thin, which is a third less than most models using the CCFL method in the market. What’s more, the superior contrast of 2000:1 guarantees unparalleled image clarity and sharpness in films, games and graphic environment. When it comes to power-saving, it is also worth noting that LG LED monitors are miles better than traditional CCFL counterparts, as they save 42% on electrical energy. All things considered, including the company’s approach to employees and manufactured home appliances, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that LG is alive and kicking and doesn’t complain about the shortage of satisfied customers.