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Damien Germès: Strong leadership in a changing market

Change is a fact of life, and this applies in particular to the business world. NGK SPARK PLUG is, of course, no exception. Founded in 1936, with the development of top-quality, high-performance spark plugs at its core, the company has continuously grown and adapted to changing markets over the years. As the automotive industry brought about new innovations, so did NGK SPARK PLUG, e.g. expanding its portfolio to include additional products, significantly increasing its logistics capacity to meet rising demands, and re-organizing its company structure to serve local markets better and more quickly. Another major change currently on the horizon: the electrification of vehicles and autonomous driving, something NGK SPARK PLUG is is taking very seriously.

There needs to be strong minds and skillful leaders to successfully lead a company through change. In the case of NGK SPARK PLUG EUROPE GmbH, Damien Germès, Senior Vice President for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), is one of these leading figures. Before joining the world-leading ignition and sensor specialist in 2012, Damien held several executive-level positions in the automotive Aftermarket industry, where he gained deep industry insight and profound expertise. At NGK SPARK PLUG EUROPE GmbH, he initially assumed the role of Executive Director, Head of Aftermarket Europe, moving on to Senior Vice President Europe, and reaching his current position in 2017, constantly extending his area of responsibility. His extensive experience and high level of skill makes him a true asset in managing transition.

When it comes to his style of communication and leadership, the Senior Vice President follows a clear line that goes hand in hand with the company’s philosophy and core values. First and foremost, he attaches great importance to staying true to himself or, to put it in other words, remaining authentic. This is certainly reflected in the way he communicates, showing his values and speaking the truth. By keeping the gap of what he is, says and does as small as possible, he becomes believable and trustworthy, which in turn empowers others to act accordingly.

Though a truly respected leader in his own right, Damien Germès himself has role models he looks up to and draws inspiration from. Take the late Steve Jobs, for example, former chairman, CEO and co-founder of Apple Inc. It goes without saying that their careers differ in a multitude of ways, but what Damien fascinates about the world-renowned entrepreneur is his ability to articulate his creative vision, challenge his employees, take staff, investors and customers on a journey, and hire great talent. Not to forget his willingness to grow and improve in difficult times: When Jobs was ousted from Apple, the company he had built, he spent several years adapting his skills and his unique style of leadership to better suit the needs of the company. This type of leadership deeply inspires Damien, and he constantly strives to perfect his skills.

The CEO magazine, a go-to source for information, inspiration and motivation for the world’s most successful leaders, executives, investors and entrepreneurs, interviewed Damien Germès on his career, leadership and the future of NGK SPARK PLUG. Read the full article here for more insight.

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