Get to know: Per Johansson, general manager at Bosch
Channel Middle East delves below the corporate strategy and marketing rhetoric to understand what really makes the region’s channel movers and shakers tick…
What’s your career history to date? How did you end up working in Dubai?
I have spent my last 16 years at Bosch within various divisions and locations across the European and Asia Pacific regions. My previous position was vice president of the Power Tools division in Europe and prior to that, I worked with the Security Systems team across Europe and Asia Pacific, based out of Singapore. Before joining the BOSCH Group, I had a stint in the start-up scene, followed by a few years working with international brands.
I have always found Dubai and the wider Middle East to be a very dynamic and interesting market, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work in this region.
If you could improve one thing about the channel business what would it be?
At Bosch we continue to find new ways to improve ourselves in terms of channel management in an effort to enhance customer experience. In my opinion, it is important to have and communicate a clear expectation between supplier and customer and align the same with all partners within the channel.
What product or technology should the channel watch out for this year?
We always strive to bring the newest innovations to the market that exceed our customers' expectations. To name a few; the DICENTIS Flush language selector providing user-friendly solutions for multi-lingual meetings, the INTEOX camera range offering an open platform to unlimited freedom for innovation and customisation, the AVIOTEC video-based fire detection system enabling the early detection of fires with cameras in low light conditions, and Bosch’s rapid COVID-19 test which can diagnose ten respiratory pathogens, are among some of our most recent offerings that provide unique solutions to consumers. We continue to work towards innovations that help ensure a better future for our communities.
What is your proudest career achievement to date?
One of my greatest achievements to date is my recent appointment as General Manager for Robert Bosch Middle East. I took this new role right when the COVID-19 crisis hit and despite the pandemic affecting economies and businesses across the globe, we did a great job as a team to navigate successfully through these unprecedented times by adjusting our operations and ways of working. Together with our great team in the Middle East, we are overcoming any challenges that come our way and remain motivated and continue delivering products and services that improve the quality of life, especially during these times.
What is the best piece of advice you have been given?
James C Collins once said, “Great vision without great people is irrelevant.” Therefore enablement, trust and empowerment are of key importance and these are values I hold close to my heart and have become an integral part of my work ethics.
What is the biggest challenge facing the Middle East IT channel?
In my opinion what we should be doing now as an industry but also within the broader business ecosystem is to revisit our business operation models, identify those gaps that have become evident during this pandemic and work towards building business continuity. We have to continue to analyse and manage risks, train team members to respond to the threat and most importantly keep everyone in the organisation safe and ensure their well-being. It is also critical to manage business schedules, timetables and IT systems to optimise remote working and the protection of personal data.
What’s your favourite thing about the company you work for?
It has to be the values that the brand represents and the inspiration it instills in all of us. At Bosch, our focus is to develop products and services that are ‘Invented for life’, spark enthusiasm, and empower members to work as a team. Most importantly, Bosch creates innovations that bring a positive change to people’s lives.
What sort of interests do you have outside of work?
My family is very important to me. This pandemic has been a reminder to us that our family’s wellbeing should remain top priority. I enjoy spending a lot of time bonding with my wife and kids and engaging in outdoor activities. Back home I am a big fan of extreme skiing, but in Dubai, I am excited to try new outdoor sports and activities, including sandboarding in the desert.