After graduating university, you started your career path. How did it progress to the Head of Sales and Marketing at Giraitės Ginkluotes Gamykla?
I started my career in the field of sales before the studies of Economics at Vytautas Magnus University. As far back as I can remember, my father’s activities have always been related to commerce. That attracted me into the field of sales. My career was varied: I was selling bolts, trousers, soap, curtains and grain. At present, I sell ammunition.
To sell, you need negotiation. In your opinion, are negotiations more of a battle or as a base of selling art? What rule do you follow in the process of negotiations?
Contrary to what many believe, negotiations begin long before a real discussion takes place. Before any negotiation takes place, first, interest must be shown by all parties involved and the situation is carefully analysed. We must be of negotiations, with the field knowledge and an understanding of the client’s expectations. They say, the best negotiations are when both, counterparts are satisfied… or dissatisfied. And the all-embracing rule of negotiation is this: listen and hear.
The sales manager is a leader in the company. What strategic sales goals have you set?
I think, growth, as a strategic goal, is pursued by many executives. That is what I seek, too. Growth can be understood not only in quantitative terms, but also geographically, brand awareness, product range, number of customers, etc.
The company's production is focused on two market segments – ammunition for civilian use and ammunition for military use. What measures help maintain competition in these market segments?
I would not agree that these two segments are competing. Rather, they complement each other. The concept of the ammunition market is quite complex, as is the production. In fact, the ammunition market could be divided into 3 parts: civil, military and law enforcement. All parts interact and often complement each other. A great example of this is our riflemen volunteers, a paramilitary structure made from civilians to support law enforcement in military conditions.
What are the present and growth prospects for the GGG brand?
In my opinion, the situation for the GGG brand today is really good. Even being small, with a limited product range, we ceded to establish ourselves in the complicated global ammunition market, emphasizing quality and customer focus. The market appreciates this. I believe our prospects are excellent.
A total of 5 distribution channels in Lithuania, 11 distribution channels in the international market, export to 30 countries around the world. In which countries and market segment do you see the biggest sales potential? What are your ambitions for expanding GGG sales channels?
Right now I see the greatest potential in the US. They have a huge market, albeit complicated. I think the countries of the Middle East are also very promising.
In terms of goals, I would like to see a strong and reliable partner in each country (that is, countries to which we can export).
The dynamic of sales volumes is different every year. What are the main reasons for these fluctuations?
Acting in a global context, we are depended on an infinite number of factors. These can be military conflicts or natural cataclysms, exchange rate fluctuations, or political events. The ability to adapt to changing circumstances and to respond flexibly to emerging opportunities or threats is one of GGG strengths. Today, the general trend of growth remains. In response to it, GGG has implemented a third additional shift. However it is very important to see and evaluate changing situations and yourself in them. It allows to gain strength and confidence.
What is the most successful decision for your career?
It was my choice to work with the trade raw materials. Perhaps not quite directly but this led me to GGG as well.
What do you think about the business myth that the customer is always right?
Well, I wouldn't call it a myth and, in fact, I agree with it... On one condition. You can't sacrifice yourself and lose your mind about it. If you eventually realize that the customer is not necessary right, he is probably not your customer.
You have traveled to many countries around the world. What country would you like to live in? Why?
In Lithuania. I like it here.
Gytis, more often do you do what you believe in, or try to believe in what you do?
It is very important for me to do what I believe in. If I succeed, I see great results.
And finally, if you had to give a short message to a news portal describing the company's activities, how would it sound?
In Lithuania GGG is an excellent (and the only one) defense industry company with great prospects. We need to appreciate that and rejoice about it.