Business Management in Times of Crisis – Lecture by Prof. Dr. Dejan Eric

Business Management in Times of Crisis

The ability and courage to facilitate fast changes, business flexibility and innovation, agility and the ability to make predictions, as well as the overcoming of psychological barriers and long-established habits – these are the main preconditions that business entities must apply and improve in the circumstances that involve almost daily changes of external and internal business factors, in the words of Prof. Dr. Dejan Eric, the dean of the Academy of Banking in Belgrade, who held a recent lecture in the Metalac company organized within the session of the extended Assembly of Businessmen whose main topic dealt with the impact of current global events on the economy of Serbia. The attendees were welcomed by Director of the Kraljevo Regional Chamber of Commerce, Zvonko Tufegdzic, and General Director of Metalac, Radmila Trifunovic.
The Covid crisis in 2020, followed by global drought in 2022 and the war in the territory of Europe between Russia and Ukraine, which is fought not only as a military conflict, but also in the fields of economy and information, have caused a great degree of uncertainty in international relations, including in business – especially in industries that rely on exports and the global market prices of raw materials used in manufacturing.
In countries whose economy depends on imports and foreign investments, which are excessively indebted and have to take loans from international sources to maintain financial stability – and Serbia is such a country – it is necessary to implement continuous changes in structures, ways of thinking and the internal business mechanisms, in companies themselves. “Rely only on your own resources, don’t wait for someone else to help you, which will probably not happen”, says Dr. Eric.

Business Management in Times of Crisis
General Director of Metalac, Radmila Trifunovic, confirmed that the planning processes here are increasingly being shortened, which consequently changes all processes and established habits. When asked if the employees of Metalac should be worried about their jobs because of the disruptions that are happening globally, she said:

Metalac has 2,200 employees in 16 companies, and we also have our worries considering this number, especially considering all the things that are happening, who we depend on, and what kinds of factors affect our business. Metalac has managed to survive for so many years precisely because of its continuous planning activities and search for new buyers and new markets, including creation of new products, and we are doing the same thing now. Even before the current crisis, we began modifying our manufacturing and sale processes towards digitalization and robotization. However, as you are aware, it is our policy that we do not resort to layoffs, regardless of circumstances, which means that people should not be concerned. It is true that the optimization of the production process will require a certain reduction in the number of workers, but this will happen naturally, in a decent and humane manner, while at the same time we will open some new options for employment, Radmila Trifunovic said after the lecture on business management in the time of crisis that was held in the Metalac company.