Intraview 3: CEO Alessandro Potalivo

Alessandro Potalivo, CEO of Intrawelt, takes care of the admin and management of personnel and connects the various parts of the Company. He told us that he’d always imagined creating Intrawelt, but it became a reality on a dreary morning, 26 years ago, 14 January 1991 to be precise.

We conclude our Intraview series on the Intrawelt Blog with our interview with Alessandro, and we take this opportunity to extend our warm wishes for this festive period. See you in 2017!

Harriet: Good Morning Alessandro. In 2016, an important year for Intrawelt, what would you say have been your highlights?

Alessandro: The business has grown in 2016 and there have been some significant events, such as the confirmation of framework agreements with high profile clients which shows us that we’re on the right track, instilling trust and motivation within the whole group.

H: What’s been you greatest challenge this year?

A: The biggest challenge is always the next project we have to do that we still know nothing about! Every client and every project presents a challenge; in terms of timing, management, the high levels of specialisation involved and so on. If, on one hand the nature of the work wears you out mentally with the continuous excitement and tension that it generates and the extreme stress it puts you under, on the other hand it increases our resilience and the professionalism with which we tackle each day of work, weekends included!

H: What do you look for in your employees? And in clients?

A: The majority of our employees have grown with us and over the years they take on our policies and our modus operandi. As a joke, we have coined the term ‘intraweltian’: is a type of alien-linguist that flies through the “word-universe”. Joking aside, I think I share a similar vision of work with the Japanese and I would like my employees to believe in this vision too, I’d like them to see the company as an integral part of their lives (and in reality a lot of them do!), but I know that that’s asking too much. From clients, I ask for loyalty and a win-win relationship, once this is established we’ll do anything to meet their demands.

H: How have work methods changed within the company with the arrival of new technology?

A: In 25 years I’ve seen an incredible evolution in our profession and I’ve noticed that only those who have adapted and accepted the new technology, combining it with their linguistic skills (which are essential) have been able to successfully remain in business. Technology will always help, but the expertise of a linguist will remain vital in order to apply the tools that become more powerful every day.

H: Among the achievements and goals you’ve reached, which are you most proud of?

A: Our client portfolio is one of the feathers in our cap, a sign of our reputation within the industry (which at times even surprises me!) and I’m very proud of our group of colleagues, from the sales team, the project managers and IT managers, to those in charge of administration, that make all of this possible.

H: And what are your hopes for 2017?

A: I hope to continue down the path set out in 2016, to introduce new job roles within the team and to strengthen it in various ways, and increase our visibility abroad.

H: If you had to choose three words to describe yourself, in any language, which would you choose and why?

A: I’d choose Italian because it’s my mother tongue, even though at times it’s flawed due to being such a traveller; but I have a profound respect for my language and my country. If I had to choose three adjectives to define myself, I’d say pragmatic, resilient and determined; although some might say laid-back, lucky and stubborn! But that’s just the haters; it’s a well known fact that fortune favours the bold!

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