“During the course of a trial, a lawyer literally makes hundreds of decisions and assessments about risk, timing and value. To be able to do all that at once and to avoid personal errors he/she should have confidence…”
Greek Lawyer & Entrepreneur
1- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: You studied Law in the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. How did you decide to start your own company Heronas?
Aikaterini Kanellia: I decided to start my own company when I met one professor that was specialized in robotics. This person had many innovative ideas but he couldn’t bring them to reality. The target of my company is to support people like him and make the innovation reality. My team (lawyers, business consultants, engineers) focuses on the needs and issues regarding the person and his/her idea. My moto is innovation; it is not only the idea it’s what we do with it.
2- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Are there any difficulties for a young person to have his/her own company in Greece?
Aikaterini Kanellia: Unfortunately there are many difficulties. The taxes sometimes are unaffordable and the Greek government does not aid young people to set up their own companies. Despite this fact, young people should keep following their dreams and never give up because they are the hope for rebuilding Greece’s economy.
3- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: How do you think a person can be inspired for creating something innovative?
Aikaterini Kanellia: I think that innovation comes when you are open-minded. There are no reliable templates, rules, processes or even measures of success. It just needs a different way of thinking.
4- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: What is the project that you are working on now?
Aikaterini Kanellia: Me and my team are creating an application for an interactive tour guide that entails information about my city, Thessaloniki. By using this tour guide a tourist can explore the city in a better way, as the application recommends places depending on his/her interests, budget and lifestyle.
5- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Will you live abroad in the name of your company?
Aikaterini Kanellia: I love traveling and exploring new cultures. Living abroad would be a challenge for me.
6- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Since you have studied law and you provide law services through “Heronas”, from your own point of view, what are the personality traits of a professional lawyer?
Aikaterini Kanellia: During the course of a trial, a lawyer literally makes hundreds of decisions and assessments about risk, timing and value. To be able to do all that at once and to avoid personal errors he/she should have confidence. For example when the lawyer needs to persuade the judge about the innocent client, he/she needs to listen and to respond properly; straight to the point. Also lawyers should have political, sociological and economic interests that make them complex human beings who are open-minded about new ideas and new experiences, and they are professionals who pursue knowledge diversity. But the most important for me is trust. Building a high level of trust with clients is the cornerstone of effective presentation. It is simple you must keep your promises without exceptions.
7- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: As a legal consultant, what are the main things you focus on in order to decide if this idea is worth investing your time and effort into or not?
Aikaterini Kanellia: When clients come to our company, they think that their idea is unique and is going to be easily accepted from society. This doesn’t usually happen. An innovative idea should pass through a strict procedure in order to be approved. “Heronas” team is taking a research so as to ascertain if the proposed idea is innovative, useful and meets the needs of the society or not. But working on innovative projects is risk-taking and you can never be sure about their success.
8- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: If you are recruiting a consultant to work for your organization, what are the qualities you are going to test in him/her, and how will you test them?
Aikaterini Kanellia: Academic qualifications are not enough. A consultant should also have experience and practical skills. The most important is to recruit multi-tasking and open-minded people who can combine knowledge from different fields. I provide them with case studies that they should work on in a limited time. At the end of the interview I ask them: What to do when you are not seeing quick results in your work? From their answers I understand if they have the ability to navigate change and develop strategic initiatives which fulfilling their vision and mission or not. In this way they can support the innovative projects and be more productive. That’s what I need in my company, and form this success will come.
9- HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Aikaterini, why do you love your job?
Aikaterini Kanellia: I believe that working on innovation projects is a challenge. Maybe there are many difficulties and risks but I never get bored.