Nadia joined CEVA in 2000, currently Managing Director for Latin America.
I was born in Cairo, Egypt, raised in Jordan and I have also lived in the UK, US and Brazil.
I joined EGL (a CEVA predecessor) in 2000, to manage air and ocean freight for LATAM. That took me to Miami for three years, until EGL joined with TNT to form CEVA. In 2013 I had a moment of insanity, and left for 3 years! But I came back and have been here ever since; it was like coming home. Nowadays, I am Managing Director- Latin America. On a more personal matter, I am married and have 2 daughters.
It was a career move. I started working for an airline cargo department, made a couple of moves and found I loved logistics, but wanted a wider regional role. CEVA was immediately a good fit for me: I see myself as an entrepreneur, and CEVA is a company where you are allowed a good degree of autonomy. I am also very aligned with the CEVA values, especially where I feel that the company is open and supports Diversity and Inclusion.
There are also great people, fun to work with, and if you want to grow there are good internal opportunities.
My focus is on leading the business - but business leadership doesn’t work if you don’t have team leadership. The best way to lead is to make your team feel valued and part of the vision: building it together and helping to achieve the goals. A leader is an enabler.
Leading the business means successfully combining the needs of our company, employees and customers. That means understanding what our customer needs, and focusing our employees on that. The company’s objectives and employees’ ambitions and vision bring it all together. The most important thing then is execution: you have to deliver.
There is very open communication within CEVA: the structure is very flat, flexible and informal. We are very agile. In my experience, some other companies are slow, rigid and inflexible, with little access to higher levels. That’s not the case at CEVA: it is a customer focused company. You can feel it in our meetings, where we talk about customers much more than about internal processes.
Our support functions – IT and HR - work with the business. And there’s a strong culture of recognition and celebration, such as our CEO mentioning business successes in global announcements and thanking people who achieved a business win.
I always have fun at CEVA. I still wake up in the morning and get excited about going to work. I have particularly enjoyed events such as our leadership training program in Switzerland, and the trip into the mountains that followed. We also had two weeks’ training in China.
Some people think I’m crazy, but I always love budget meetings! My moment of joy is presenting my budget to the board: I know we’ll get challenged by them, and have to answer tough questions. The team does a lot of preparation for this, including role plays on how we explain various aspects; and this happens every year. But it’s a great opportunity to review all the countries, the business lines and the projections. I find it all very positive.
The best moments are when we’re celebrating winning new business. A couple of years ago we closed the biggest ecommerce business deal in LATAM, and then we really partied!
Although I am probably in the later stages of my career after nearly 40 years in the industry, I’m still pleased and proud to work for CEVA. The role of the region is changing, although its size remains the same. Now I’m part of the Executive Board, and I view that as an upgrade of my current role. I could envision myself leading a bigger region or taking a global role, or expanding my own region.
Over 20 people from our region have transferred to great positions around the world: that’s a clear example of opportunities that were given to our talents - we open up opportunities internally.
Now the company has a clear blue-print and product lines, that will also help us to identify talents and create more opportunities. There is also discussion and workshops on various topics such as talent development and recognition, and how we can develop staff movement between our parent CMA CGM and CEVA.
Using the tag-line we have now: “responsive logistics for you”. Because we adapt to our customers, and simplify their needs. Some of our competitors may be more structured than us, but we are less rigid and more flexible, and we deliver intelligent solutions.
You could see that with the COVID19 situation: I am really amazed how we managed to create fast, effective solutions and move so many things – all thanks to our speed, agility and collaboration. CEVA has very intelligent people, and in specific areas like solutions design and Business Process Excellence we have very smart people who do very bright things.