How do you get a rate increase

How do you get a rate increase

Hard to imagine a client jumping for joy at the announcement of an increase in your price. But with a little diplomacy and refining your approach, you will make less bitter potion.

Soaring commodity prices, soaring electricity prices, burgeoning fringe benefits . The reasons to revise its rates on the rise, especially where profitability is crumbling, do not miss. But whatever the motives and circumstances, imposing a price increase to a customer can not be improvised, especially if it is important. You’ll have to prepare the ground, but also sharpen your arguments to answer the objections that will be advanced to you at the official announcement. Observing a few simple rules will help you get the pill smoothly, even with the most customers reassembled.

Send signals to avoid surprise

The worst tactics is to deliver the bad news suddenly and unexpectedly. Not to steer your customer, you must instead prepare for this possibility several weeks in advance, preferably at an informal meeting or during a discussion without issue. Avoid show you devastated, but does not minimize the project: “An increase in our rates is in the pipes, as you are one of our loyal customers, I prefer to tell you..” As for the figures, remain vague as possible: your partner will thus be tempted to imagine the worst and show him relieved when you announce the actual amount of the increase. He expected 15%? In reality, it will be “only” 5%. Your will increase much more easily.

Choose the right timing for the official announcement

Nothing prevents you to call your best customers to prevent them before they receive the official letter informing them of your new fee schedule. In this letter, be as simple and concise as possible. No need to lie down or try to justify yourself, you will have the time to explain in an interview face to face. The key at this stage is to avoid timing error. Just a few years an industrial food was trapped by introducing price increases to a supermarket chain just when it published record profits. The central purchasing obviously jumped at the chance to return the supplier in its goals. Similarly, if your client has something to reproach you, defer the announcement: wait for the failures of your machines or your delivery delays are resolved! The best solution, if you are decision maker, of course, is proceeding gradually, spreading the increase over time. Your customer support more easily regular and low rise – once a year, for example, on the occasion of an order or a contract renewal – a supposed whammy offset several years of rate stability.

Show yourself firm and without complex

Many commercial will agonize at the thought of approaching the subject. The most worried are also not necessarily those who practice the most expensive price. This fear and the stress it generates lies right from the start at a disadvantage. In sales talk, your partner will notice and interpret it as an admission of weakness. To display a maximum of serenity, remember that price is rarely the first purchase criterion. All surveys of professional buyers show that the quality (in the broadest sense: after-sales period, support .) at least as important in their choices, especially when it comes to products with high added value and services complicated.

Make it clear to your partner from the beginning of the interview that the new price is final and not negotiable. Be loath is from beaten and risk losing all credibility. By asserting your authority, you will inspire respect and it will then be easier to defend your point of view. What is important to your customer, is that the new tariff is compatible with its budget and there is no product cheaper elsewhere or equivalent service. An increase does not make you a “thief” in which your client would be the victim. It is a conscious decision, reflecting the evolution of your offer and your business environment. You too have to get results, the objectives and jobs to defend.

Argue with objective elements

Whatever the customer profile, if your price increases are due to the increases that you suffer from your own providers, specify it clearly. You have every opportunity to convince by showing that you do that integrating additional loads – and thus not you increase your rates to earn more, but not to lose. An industrial baker, for example, will emphasize that the rise in wheat prices (which rose sharply in one year) increased all its supply costs.

It is also an opportunity to promote your offer by emphasizing its strengths. Take the opportunity to highlight additions or progress, however small, which have recently received your products or services. Finally, take care of the vocabulary used. Avoid the term “expense” or “cost” “, which can cause negative reactions and unnecessarily increase customer resistance. Instead, talk about “investment” or “value.” Do not say: “With this new tariff, your hardware now costs 1,000 euros.” But rather: “It will invest 1000 euros to benefit from all the advantages of the material that I offer.”

Provide facilities in case of blockage

Despite your best efforts, your decision is struggling to pass? If you feel very refractory customer, ready to let you down, show yourself flexible

And conciliatory. Suggest, for example, to delay the entry into force of the future price or, if it is a service, apply only to the part of the contract remaining to be processed. also planning a return to the final stage of negotiation: an additional service, deadlines shorter delivery . A small concession released at the right time will help you coax the toughest. Your customer found cheaper elsewhere? Do not panic. Ask him about the competitor’s offer, and show the benefits of your solution. Those who are not perceived necessarily immediately and justify the price difference: a stronger product in duration, quality manufacturing guarantees a rate close to zero outages, more competent staff, additional services ( exchange in case of dissatisfaction, advice hotline available around the hour twenty-four).

If the client remains recalcitrant, offer a cheaper alternative, but less advantageous. This will put it to the wall: either accept the increase or it reviews its needs downward. This tactic can test his “desire”. If he is really interested, he will bend to your new tariff. Otherwise, opt for your low cost offers. You will certainly edging on your sales . but kept a customer.

Make your most seen the show stand

Make your most seen the show stand

If companies are scrambling in these events is that the game is worth the candle. But still need to stand out to attract visitors .

About 1,800 fairs are held every year in France. Companies come meet with their clients, new prospects, make themselves known or sniff the industry trend, observing the new competition. This participation, however, has a cost. A stand 10 to 20 square meters, in a medium-sized room, currency is between 8,000 and 16,000 euros. And it takes up to 40,000 euros for 25 square meters in a public event such as the Paris Motor Show. Basically, this budget is divided equally between the rental and management of the stand, on the one hand, and indirect costs (salaries, travel) and communication, on the other. Return on such investment implies attract maximum visitors. Our advice to achieve this.

Get as close as possible poles of attraction

Remember to book your place in advance. Even from one year to another if you expose a salon that practices “rebooking”. Get as close as possible poles of attraction: VIP area, TV studio (where the lectures are held), press office, bars, restaurants and even toilets (to benefit from the passage). Prefer a secondary driveway leading to a lively place: in the main walkways, visitors traveling in the middle and it is difficult to approach them. Since it is not a competitor, to stand beside a major exponent is a good idea because you will benefit from the crowds it generates. Avoid, however, the little busy places such as peripheral alleys, away from leisure and catering spaces. The just behind the entrance is also a gamble: in their tracks, visitors do not want to stop.

Use the best available means of communication

Your business must be included in the exhibition catalog (description of activity, number of the aisle, stand, etc.) Also, consider buying distribution rights, which will allow you to distribute flyers or giveaways in the aisles for a day or half a day. Do not overlook the tools offered by the organizers. On Direct Marketing expo, the communications agency Fidelis was able to afford form of dog paws that plodded inlays on the carpet to its booth (cost of such an operation: between 1,000 and 5,000 euros ). Before the event, announce your participation by all means: website, social network, newsletter and even signing your emails . Invite your customers and prospects by email three months in advance and make regular reminders in the last fortnight.

Make your booth attractive and look after the home

To capture attention, make sure that your stand is way off: lights and bright colors, large and beautiful images . Facilitate Access (outlaw stairs, partitions, door, etc.), take care of the decor (with plants green, for example), opt for designer furniture and choose a slogan that clearly describes your business: we must understand at a glance what you do. Another tip: put the emphasis on the height of the stand, even sacrifice some space, for thus it will gain in impact. Finally, fashionable trend, arrange a VIP area on the roof. Guaranteed effect! If your budget allows, enjoy the services of a hostess (250 to 300 euros per day). Also plan some training so she knows establish a first contact with visitors, educate or direct them to the right person.

Multiply gifts and friendliness signs

Sweets, cakes, “goodies” . these little touches will all hooks. In the alleys, offer giveaways (a magnet, for example). Once shod visitors, encourage them to drop their business card in a box to enter a daily draw lots which will, according to your means, a gift box, a touch pad or a flat screen. Plan also presents for your longstanding customers (business card case, memory stick, bottle of wine). On the stand, candy jars or drinks will help you retain visitors longer. Book alcohol at lunchtime and cocktails. In the morning, prepare coffee and indulge in at will.

Schedule of events and let us know

Multiply highlights: presentation of a novelty, launching a product which you invite the press. Citroën has waited for the Shanghai Motor Show in April to present the DS5: 600 journalists were present. If you have space, do as the United States: round tables about fifteen minutes, followed by a question-and-answer session with the audience. Invite your customers to participate in the showcase. And above all, do you know yourself by intervening in conferences organized by the living room. Animations must be announced and be reminders by email (the day before) and SMS (45 and 5 minutes before their start) to customers and prospects at the show. Some organizers are in charge of these automated submissions. Otherwise, go with a provider.

EUTELSAT: Philippe Lin appointed CEO of the group’s office in China

EUTELSAT: Philippe Lin appointed CEO of the group’s office in China

A French national, Philippe Lin graduated from the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, the National School of Administration (ENA) and the Canadian National School of Public Administration.

Highlights Value

Communication – Medias

The consolidation is expected to continue in the media because the context supports a continuation of reconciliation, especially in broadcasting. Large groups hold nearly 13 billion euros in cash, allowing them to perform operations. The companies in the sector, which often have much lower margins than before the crisis, have an interest to achieve scale to find new sources of growth. Thus, in the television, buy small chains takes advantage of audience fragmentation observed for several years. Until now, unlike their foreign competitors, stakeholders have invested little in France. All nevertheless displayed their willingness to develop in the media sector, without counting on the ambitions of telecom operators.

L’Oreal, the making machine cracks

L’Oreal, the making machine cracks

The global leading beauty cream recruiting and marketing experts. Survey codes and methods of a group that does not tolerate to nearly.

Even the interview river Liliane Bettencourt, the heiress of L’Oreal, in “Paris Match”, in early October, was censored. In recent months, the world’s No. 1 cosmetics removes its internal review of all press articles related to bounce “case”. “The first business,” insists substantially Jean-Paul Agon, CEO. At the headquarters in Clichy, as in the smallest branch in the other side of the world, employees do not have to do violence to follow the instructions, they assimilated. The pressure for results is rooted in the history of this multinational, accustomed for twenty-six years at a double-digit growth in profits (+ 21.4% in first half 2010). Here, self-improvement is the rule. And leadership the cardinal virtue. backstage Survey among these executives “who are worth it.”

The cult of “always more”

Flowing, really? When he was appointed CEO of L’Oreal, in 2006, Jean-Paul Agon was reputed to be less brittle Lindsay Owen-Jones, its predecessor for eighteen years, now president of the group, and is still the subject of a real veneration in the house. To mark its difference, the new boss has stepped up social measures: the fight against stress, charter on diversity, evaluation of managers on personal development criteria . But the profitability requirement, it has not changed. Now, L’Oreal, those are the numbers that dictate the tempo. Hence the ultrasoutenu rhythm, which sometimes puts family life to evil, especially for young mothers (64% of employees are women).

A visit to the headquarters in Clichy, where the phosphorus in consumer products, is enough to be convinced. At nine least, marketers of L’Oreal Paris, Garnier and Maybelline are already busy in their offices. It is frowned upon arriving later. The day then place in a frantic whirlwind burst meetings, lunch break shipped in thirty minutes, security officials forced to dislodge the most zealous after 21 h 30 . “Life at L’Oreal, is a little return student years, summarizes a framework. later we bump together, they dine together, see you on the weekend . “

The consumer division, which accounts for half of sales, is known to be the hardest. “Fought Market, knife negotiations with retailers . it’s war!” Laughs a product manager. “The atmosphere is just as tense luxury division, Lancôme and Biotherm. But the relationships between people are more muted, “says one expert group. And it is even relaxed in the active cosmetic branches (Vichy, La Roche Posay .) and professional products (Kerastase, Redken .). Normal: L’Oreal dominates the market for drugstores and hair salons.

Everywhere, management maintains emulation. At all levels. We must, of course, beat rivals in its sector: Nivea, Schwarzkopf or LVMH (Dior, Guerlain .). But doing better, too, than the other group brands. And, if possible, than other products in its own team. “My boss loved to put under my nose the figures of my colleagues,” says a former product manager. To stand out, young wolves marketers use their expertise as their “expertise.” They speak highly of their good results in the cafeteria, distribute their products to all services in preview . “Market yourself!” They do we advise the HRD. The rumor even says that a director would have let to the year for its brand all the advertising boards on the path taken by Jean-Paul Agon, from his home in Neuilly-sur-Seine to the seat of Clichy history lather with the boss .

A naturelleLa selection pressure is at its peak on the day of the budget or strategic presentations. The most feared? The “prospective” meeting. Twice a year, the 23 owners of international brands exhibiting their launch plans to Jean-Paul Agon. “One month we hump like crazy to wedge all,” says a luxury division of the frame. Make and remake – a L’Oreal principle – slides, check the tables of figures, including the famous “OJ1” – the initials of Owen-Jones – that compares sales advertising investment . Number of careers are made and unmade during the oral exam.

The weakest often end up resigning. Or inherit a job for less. “When my boss found itself in the sights, I understood the meaning of humiliation,” says this former communications service. In recent months, with the crisis, “Darwinism” was further strengthened. “Jean-Paul Agon has declared a so-called combing policy says a” orealien the “seasoned. We were asked to be inflexible with those who underperform. In some countries, an internal study showed that demotivaient colleagues . “

Remuneration gold

The house know however be generous towards those who hold up. In 2009, L’Oreal executives got an average 4.9% increase, enough to fantasize a lot of their colleagues in the CAC 40. “We ask a lot, but in return we give as much confirms Jean- Claude Le Grand, HRD of the consumer division. Fixed, comfortable salaries but in standard French multinationals are added almost three months salary in profit sharing. “Either 9000 euros for a youth group leader paid 40 000 per year,” it calculated to management. “On the incentive, only Dassault competes with us,” says Georges Liarokapis, central delegate CFE-CGC. Seat Clichy and Saint-Ouen, employees also have a concierge worthy of a palace. Gone, however, the lavish receptions, disco fee notes or what happened, seminars in Mauritius, with luxury, fireworks and champagne dinner in a private lagoon. ensures management control.

The talent hunt

Not enough to lower the L’Oreal rating among students, obviously. In the last week of ESCP in Paris, the group’s stand has raised more than 1 000 applications in one day! The seven scouts dispatched to the occasion asked the young detailing their motivations and to engage in the “exegesis” of a product selected at random. All in five minutes flat . “The detection of talent is an obsession with us,” explains Jean-Claude Le Grand. The company invests several million euros each year in company chairs (HEC as the School of Mines), partnerships with 200 universities in the world, marketing contest .

The largest of them, the “L’Oreal Brandstorm” attracted in June more than 6000 students from 270 schools scattered around the globe. The prize for the winning team? A trip to 10 000 and six-month internship. A must for getting a job: 90% of new hires are former interns. These orealiens the budding paid 1,100 euros net per month, three times the standard compensation, are tested on real projects under the command of a young product manager whose scans at the same time, the ability to management.

Only the best students are hired after four to ten interviews! Again, the product is at the heart of the process. “They showed me a hair coloring bottle, I had twenty minutes to present a plan to launch internationally!” Recalls Anna Weste, 29 years already and Marketing Director Europe for makeup L’Oreal Paris . A battery of questions, sometimes surprising ( “And if you were a vegetable?”) Makes sure that the candidate is hardworking, talented and ambitious oral. In short, it has the standard profile. “Koalas have two voltage does not belong here,” a downright cowardly leader.

The mold managerAvant to take their position, the new kids are all sent “on the road”. A test of six to twelve months during which they travel, shoulder computer, the province of supermarkets, install deodorants on the shelves at 5 am and slept at night in spartan hotels industrial area . “Hard, but essential for rub for retailers and consumers, “says an employee at Lascad (Dop, Mixa, Narta .). After this “hazing” scale, young product managers for two weeks following an integration course, the L’Oreal Culture Discovery, with presentation of different trades (R & D, finance, advertising .) and visits to factories or logistics centers.

Then it’s the big plunge. “It starts in the pool of the business and you have to learn to swim alone,” said one seat frame. This early empowerment, rare in multinationals is one of the key elements that appeals to young graduates. “By becoming a product manager on the red Maybelline lip, I found myself at the head of an SME. At 24! “Anna is still surprised Weste. Price segmentation of the range, merchandising, advertising . It’s all to do. Better then follow the motto here “! Lie with your products” At Clichy, one sees that they: Elvive shampoo mounds or aftershave Men Expert enthroned in each office.

Express promotions

If L’Oreal as dream in business schools and marketing, it is also because careers are faster than elsewhere. A manager with high potential, spotted after several successful launches, is automatically promoted every two or three years, as first group leader, operational marketing director then and CEO of a brand and finally a country. To expand its range, it often exchange sector. Before becoming Global Head of Professional Products, Christophe Leguay, 48, went through three divisions in France and then to Britain, where he oversaw L’Oreal Paris. The objective of the management? Maintain managers in a “healthy concern,” as they say in the jargon home and drive up the best. To the peaks.

Jean-Paul Agon has opened recruiting external talent, young people under 30 years still “formatables” or pointed seniors, as Veronique Gautier, former President Jean Paul Gaultier named International CEO of Giorgio Armani fragrances. And it now allows those who left L’Oreal – sacrilege time Owen-Jones – to return. But, most top managers are always from the Seraglio. The forty more senior officers are even the subject of a personalized succession plan, with, for each of them, three names identified dolphins in the house. The machine is not near seize .

The new prospectors Silicon Valley

The new prospectors Silicon Valley

Location: California. These entrepreneurs to conquer the web with, in their luggage, an idea, a project, a start-up . and unfailing optimism.

Fabien Degaugue is not at his first attempt. He has created and sold a website for businesses when it launches in 2006 PeerPong, a search tool based on social networks. At the time, the young entrepreneur originally from northern France has the ambition to create “the next Google” nothing less. But he soon encounters a primary reality, that of money. He toured the Parisian bankers and business angels, and those seeking major European Business School Admissions. Despite his best efforts, he managed to raise 200,000 euros, a sum largely insufficient to fund all the research prior to the launch.

Bored by the ambient nervousness, he decided to try his luck in Silicon Valley, Mecca digital entrepreneurs. A decision he has not regretted: excited about the project, the first person he met in California sign a check. Finally, in three years, it will raise 6 million and will resell PeerPong in 2009 for a tidy sum does not wish to reveal. “What is impossible is possible here in Europe,” says he.

A unique ecosystem of its kind. As Fabien, there are thousands, from all countries, to migrate to the legendary Silicon Valley. A true gold rush 2.0. Last year, nearly 50% of new startups in San Francisco Bay were created by foreigners: Indians and Chinese for the most part, but also Europeans. And the French are not lagging behind, since they are the first European community there. The profile of these new gold diggers? Large schools of graduates of engineering or business aged 25 to 35 years, coming up with a business project or just an idea.

For here, they know that dreams can turn into reality last year, San Francisco has invested nearly $ 11 billion in start-up, five times more than Tel Aviv, his most serious competitor, and twenty times more than the entire french territory. It must be said that Silicon Valley is a unique ecosystem: 6,000 high-tech companies are located in the region; almost all of the digital giants (Google, Apple, Twitter .) are installed; Investors in venture Business School Admission and business angels willing to finance start-ups jostle, and the top-flight engineers trained in prestigious universities in California Stanford or Berkeley.

For adventurers of modern times, it is also an opportunity to tackle the huge US market. All have in mind examples like Instagram, a start-up of 13 people founded by a Brazilian, who was bought nearly $ 1 billion by Facebook in August 2012. The jackpot! “Where, in France, you would win 10 times your bet, here, for the same effort, you multiply the 100,” said Carlos Diaz, who resold BlueKiwi, his start-up, a big consulting firms last year (see our slideshow by clicking on the image of the article).

When fate gets involved . Before jumping into a plane to the American West, our entrepreneurs, most of them already found a concept or developed part of their application or their website. And they saved enough to last a few months time to find an investor or first customers. Some even got a little help from fate, like Vincent Van Poll: the Dutch 28 years working for several months on the project start-up when his wife landed a job at the consulate of the Netherlands, in San Francisco.

Others, without planning anything, decide to try their luck at the Nicolas Guerin image. This young man of 35, a native of Biarritz, was improvised contractor in San Francisco after unsuccessfully attempting to break into Hollywood as a film editor, occupation he exercised in France. He learns on the job development and the fundamentals of a business, and working on several projects in parallel. It created Strobbr, a sort of Instagram that allows for interactive sequences pictures, he hopes to sell to Nike and Red Bull.

A cruel world. But disillusionment can also be part of the journey: the kingdom of the startups, there are many called but few are chosen. Since the crisis of the “dot-com” in 2001, investors have become more fussy and looking for companies able to generate cash quickly. “It’s so cruel, it works a bit like Hollywood, says Carlos Diaz. Sometimes the script sucks, but the company is funding because it has a star in his team – a former vice chairman of Twitter, for example. Conversely, good business ideas can not find investors because they are not visible enough. ”

But for entrepreneurs, it is urgent to quickly find funds to keep because the cost of living in the bay is very high: San Francisco is the third most expensive city in the United States. “I pay 6000 dollars a month to stay with my wife and my two children,” says Carlos Diaz. As for wages, they are prohibitively expensive: over 100 000 per year for a young developer just out of school. “Engineers of the valley are spoiled for choice, there is a shortage here. Result, it is not uncommon that they’ll drop out after two weeks is more elsewhere offer them, “says Nicolas Guerin, who is committed to working with freelance engineers based in Paris. Vincent Van Poll, in turn, delegated the design and development of its site to a team located in Bolivia.

Cockroaches and “warriors”. In everyday life, it is the ongoing cost-cutting: “It’s simple, says Vincent Van Poll, as soon as my partner submits a new expense to me, my first instinct is to say no, we’re talking about hours . development or small innocuous purchases “the less fortunate are using all kinds of tricks: they sleep more per room, go to free lectures to enjoy the buffet, affecting unemployment benefits or the RSA until French authorities realizing and writes off . Some go into “warrior” mode and go to sleep secretly in their local “coworking” to save rent. “A lot of people have given up on projects similar to ours, but us, we take. We will not die, it is the cockroaches! “Laughs Jeremy Melul cofounder Jogabo, an application dedicated to football fans (see our slideshow by clicking on the image of the article).

A good way to support themselves is to make developer of services for third parties. Nicolas Guerin and spends half his time to his start-up and the other to build sites for US companies. Fortunately for the Gold Digger 2.0, in Silicon Valley, the opportunities for professional meetings are legion: “meet up” (conference-workshops offered by the spaces of “coworking” and incubators) “demo days” ( startups outputs an incubator present their project in three minutes by my watch), “hackathons” (collective challenges available to developers with a reward to the key) . Even in bars, just turn your head to hear people discuss their project.

Entrepreneurs Inn. When he arrived in San Francisco, there is a year, the Dane Christian Hansen knew no one and had no specific project. “It was crazy to come like that shrinking violet, admits he. But I met many people in the same situation as me and the people I meet me offer help spontaneously. “He also chose to stay at Startup Basecamp, a special hostel contractors, which it can exchange with other miners Web. But young designers do not they fear being bitten their idea when they speak? “An idea is worth nothing. What matters is to realize and especially to distribute “Nicolas Guerin slice. Here, we do not hesitate to approach the big hitters, those who have “cracked the code” as it says here, super angels, entrepreneurs and successful managers at Google or Facebook. Even if the business model does not convince them, they usually take the time to be interested and to give their opinion.

Greyhound Racing. The tasks are to manage multiple and entrepreneurs do not count their hours. At Jogabo, while Pierre-Guillaume Herveou focuses on the code and Mehdi Djabri on design, Jeremy Melul must support everything else. It recruits trainees, animates the user community, develop marketing application, meet investors . Time is against them, because every day that passes sees the cash reserves decrease. “In France, as start-ups receive a lot of aid, Labradors are created: they have the silky hair, but they are a little slow. Here are produced greyhounds: to go fast, you have to have an empty stomach, ‘says Carlos Diaz.

Make fast and not very well. The concept in vogue in recent years is the “lean start-up”, which is developing as quickly as possible each “brick” of his project for the immediately confront the return of users. At Jogabo, it takes about two weeks to design a new feature. The team then observed if members use it if that’s the case, they improve, otherwise they drop. “We must be the puzzle, make it work, . We sell the project properly rearranged, once it is affordable,” explains Jeremy Melul.

Given the pressure and workload, stress rises quickly. Each uses his trick to evacuate. Pierre-Guillaume Herveou goes every day to the gym with a developer friend who works in the same space of co-working. Nicolas Guerin practice surfing in the morning before going to work. Mehdi Djabri will recharge to the mosque in the evening, on returning from the office. The project’s success also depends, and especially by a collective spirit foolproof. We must stick together without being discouraged and put it frankly, without fear of offending the other, to avoid wasting time. “The team is more important than the project,” said Christian Hansen.

To all these concerns is added that the right to reside in the United States. The gold miners usually start with a business visa, which is obtained relatively easily but is only six months and is renewable only once. For this reason, Jogabo team will soon move to Buenos Aires, with no certainty to return one day in San Francisco. Foreign entrepreneurs are using all kinds of tricks to be able to stay in the US. On the advice of his lawyer, Nicolas Guerin has become trainee of his own company. This solution, at the limit of legality, allowed him to stay a year and a half there. Then he took steps to clinch an investor visa. Valid for five years, sesame required to invest at least $ 100,000 in a US company. Nicolas has therefore placed in his own business profits of a year of consulting, which he added $ 50,000 of personal savings. Besides his return trips to the Embassy of the United States in Paris, or attorneys’ fees, of $ 5,000. “A real obstacle course,” says he.

If, despite all the administrative and financial difficulties, our gold miners hold out is that they all share a belief they will sooner or later find it rich. Nicolas Guerin has yet to the idea that his start-up could well crash. Not enough to deter. “I met some guys who have failed five times before successfully,” he tempers. The serial entrepreneur has the sequence of ideas: he wants to develop a site where foreigners would share a hotel room to compete with Airbnb. Beta versions are already online.

No rest for the wicked. For those who manage to make an “exit”, that is to say, to sell their company, touching a nice gain, the gold fever does not fall, on the contrary. Having experienced the full cycle of start-ups, creating resale through fundraising, they can Business School Admissionize on what they have learned. “It goes much faster the second time,” says Fabien Degaugue, which was launched a year ago in a new entrepreneurial adventure. Convinced that “email is the end of life,” he designed Instaply, an SMS communication platform between customers and businesses available yet in the United States, France and Belgium (see our slideshow by clicking image of the article).

He has already collected $ 500,000 and “preparing to raise more in a few months.” His friend Carlos Diaz, who sold his company BlueKiwi for € 20 million last year, could afford an extended vacation. But even before the acquisition has taken place, it had already launched Kwarter, an application that allows exchange between supporters and win prizes while watching a game on TV. “We’re the only ones on the niche . maybe because it has no interest! The future will tell, “said the French, at the head of fifteen people. Breaking the gold fever is not easy .

The most welcoming countries for the French who want to emigrate

The most welcoming countries for the French who want to emigrate

Blocked in France? Inventory of countries seeking skills for all candidates to work with or without diplomas.

William Doudou Thiam in 2002: a young graduate who connects the CSD-lived despite its economy stalled in college master Marseille. The same in 2013: he lives in London, where he created OST Consulting, a recruitment firm, after learning on the job among hunters reputed heads. “Here, no one is concerned about the reputation of my training, my sounding name or the color of my skin,” says the Franco-Senegalese 35 years. As for back across the Channel, it is not for tomorrow, “I’ll soon get married here .”

Without going to marry a native, although the French do not hesitate, as William, to start or restart their careers abroad. We know the French scene: a weak labor market, the trend of recruiters to dismiss the imperfect CV, worship graduation, the difficulty that specifically meet candidates from immigrant even graduates. Elsewhere, all is not rosy, of course. But some of these barriers are more easily removed. Provided to choose the right destination.

Germany: technicians and engineers are sought

Ask a German HR that means to him Polytechnique “He probably evoke an employee master several technologies” smiles Jerôme Lecot, director Eurojob Consulting, a Franco-German recruitment firm. With their education systems, focusing on short vocational courses, our neighbors appreciate the quality of our engineers, but do not fall into a swoon before our schools. So, many profiles have their chance. Starting in the industry, bac + 2 technical or commercial and tray 5 in mechanical engineering, electronics and energy. Of course, germanisants will be favored.

But beware: even for these, all regions are created equal. If half of the 50,000 French arriving each year opt for Berlin and its trendy atmosphere, they do not necessarily make the best choice. First, because unemployment is high (12%, against 5% in the country) and, except in the Internet start-up, jobs are scarce. Then because wages are on average 20% lower than in the west. Better to aim for the North Rhine-Westphalia, Baden-Württemberg or Bavaria, more dynamic. To find the offers, please visit the corporate sites and general job boards, like Monster, Indeed StepStone or or specialized (Log-Employment, VDI). Finally to network, go for Xing, first social site in Germany.

Australia: Working Holiday is the ideal entry visa

In 2013, Australia will know its twenty-second consecutive year of growth. Even if it slows down for a few months, it would take more to worry about its inhabitants. Want to smell a scent of optimism? For 18-30 years, it’s simple. Just ask a Working Holiday work permit, as did last year’s 20,000 French. Valid for one year, it allows prospecting on site, while living, if necessary, in odd jobs picking fruit and vegetables or restoration. But if you want to stay longer, we must find sustainable employment. Naturally, all profiles will not have the same opportunities. It will be difficult in marketing and communication, simpler in engineering or sales.

To find, know that “60% of positions are filled by word-of-mouth,” says Jacques Reynaud, director of consulting firm HR Polyglot Group. Networking is therefore necessary, on LinkedIn, but also with the Franco-Australian Chamber of Commerce. Another imperative register with employment agencies (see list on Seek.com.au), through which passes a quarter hiring. Finally, if you have more than 30 years, know that access to the Australian market will be difficult because work visas are granted only to those who already have a job. So, much prospect with a tourist visa, even though it is forbidden. A hope: to have a job which the country lacks, as auditor geologist, doctor or nurse. You will then receive a special entry procedure.

Canada: Francophones are encouraged to come

In November, the Canadian Embassy in Paris will organize its traditional annual forum on employment. But do not expect to enter freely. “Given the influx, visitors are selected in advance on record,” apologizes Louise Van Winkle, the immigration service. With its strong economy, its tolerant society . and French as a second language, the country has something to attract. To the point that employment center has an agreement with the authorities to encourage our unemployed from. How to do ? For those under 35, the best is to ask, as in Australia, a Working Holiday work permit. It will allow for a year of seeking an employer, a CDI contract is necessary to obtain a long-term visa. No language skills or experience are required.

Attention their number is limited enrollment. Last year, the 6/700 availability were taken in 48 hours! Next destination, Quebec is logically the most popular province. Yet others, predominantly English-speaking, have potential, such as Alberta (construction, oil and gas), Ontario (ICT, biotech) or . Saskatchewan (education, health). Finally, if you are considering a permanent installation, be aware that some trades will be more favored than others in obtaining the papers, as they are deemed fit to shortages. This is the case, for example, mechanical engineers, chemists and computer scientists, but also welders, electricians, sheet metal workers or plumbers.

United States: we must use cunning to access the “American dream”

Hundreds of thousands of French nationals in the United States could testify. To work in the US, we must be patient because visa policy is strict: a contract is required before issuing the precious document. However, catering to IT, through fashion, tourism, engineering, areas abound in which local employers appreciate the French touch. The ideal for a graduate is to start with a VIE (voluntary international business) in a French subsidiary. Over a period of six months to two years, it can start looking for potential recruiters. Only competition obliges the LIFE are often former major schools.

For others, there are tricks. First, that of canvass come on a tourist visa, even if it is not allowed. If you are under 35, it will be possible in the absence of a permanent contract, negotiate an internship of one year. To find the twenty Franco-American Chambers of Commerce will provide the opportunity for a valuable relay. Alternatively, however costly, enroll in an American college, even unknown. You will get a student visa and, at the end of your “true-false” studies, you can stay one more year with a visa says OPT issued easily. Provided, again, to have found at least one internship. For this, think primarily the many companies created by our compatriots. This was done Jerôme Lambert. This doctor of Finance 28, who found nothing in France, landed late 2011 in San Diego and quickly got an analyst at AnaMetrix, a web marketing start-up whose founder is a serial entrepreneur tricolor.

Britain: rapid career for atypical CV

How many are the Froggies? No one really knows. In London alone, the figures vary between 200,000 and 300,000! In any case, as shown by our survey, they are numerous and their profiles are more varied. It must be said that the British Business School Admission has a knack for attracting. And not only graduates of high schools in the City. Those ânonnent English find odd jobs in restaurants or distribution. “But once at home in the language, they can evolve,” says Marine Deneux, Center Charles Peguy, a French association that helps to fit. Those speaking well candidateront in recruitment agencies that monopolize 90% of the offers. Some firms such as French Resources aimed compatriots. Warning: here, a good degree does not decide a career. “Motivation is equally important,” says Alexandre Leblanc. In France, a graduate of ESC Troyes saw that offering jobs in sales. Party in London in late 2010, he started in marketing before becoming responsible HR and management consultant! “This trip changed my life.” Who’s next?

Annecy, Brest, Caen . very profitable operations in the former to renovate

Paris: cheap twelve towns with a promising future with the future transport network

Annecy: direct access to the motorway A 41 municipalities in the southern suburbs

Too late to find a good plan in the downtown! Having climbed 5 to 6% in eight months, the prices of old stones will probably have peaked: up to 4500 euros per square meter! However, do not hesitate to put the focus on the southern outskirts, to Chapeiry, Lime, chainaz-les-frasses or Balmont. With the commissioning of a highway interchange in the last few months, these common finally have direct access to Highway A41, leading to Grenoble and Geneva, which makes them much more attractive. Vendors are beginning to raise their prices, but with a budget of EUR 350 000, one can still afford a house of five or six rooms in perfect condition. This one, built in 2004, with an area of ​​115 square meters on a plot of 1000 square meters, just to exchange Chainaz-les-Frasses 325 000. According to the realtor David Chavanne, it could be 10% higher by the end of 2012.

Anne-Lise Defrance.

Brest canvass neighborhoods will soon be crossed by tram

The commissioning of the first tram line in June, 2012, has not raised prices. But you have to expect fast enough, especially at the feet of the stations. Prospect’s St. Martin and Pillar Red neighborhoods near the Jean-Jaurès: according to professionals, the dimension of family property will appreciate it at least 10%. For three or four old-pieces, count between 80 000 and 90 000. The studios, available from 45 000, have less upside potential, but they easily rent 300 euros per month, providing a cost often more than 7%. Interesting also the Recouvrance district, adjoining the arsenal. Its luxury will soon improve with the rehabilitation of the Capuchin tray, located on the heights. In addition, the tram should go through the next few years, keeping it ten minutes from downtown. Price is not exceeded to ensure proper case: square meter 1,000 euros. Home fans will seek the town of Plouzane, which will host the terminus of the tram. There are still 100 square meters of pavilions at least 180 000.

Caen: business in the former near the station, in houses or apartments

Steering the right bank! Behind the station, a large activity center will be inaugurated in 2014. Along the redeveloped docks for the occasion will sprout a shopping center, a multiplex cinema, an upscale hotel, offices and housing. What energize adjacent residential areas and will drive up the coast. “It goes back a year ago, but still 20% lower than the other side of the bridge,” said Yohan Loyez, agency Century 21 Tirard-Gardie. At St. Therese and Half Moon, now served by the tram, apartments and houses (1950 and 1960) are still trading at less than 1900 euros per square meter, even in good condition. By cons, to enjoy the village atmosphere of Vaucelles area further west, it will often spend more than 2500 euros per square meter. Already expensive, but without risk: speculation linked to the arrival of the TGV Paris-Normandie, which, by 2020, will link Caen to Paris in 75 minutes will support prices.

Clermont-Ferrand rating upward in Avenue area of ​​the Republic

If there is a neighborhood of this city whose rating is likely to explode in the five years is that of the Avenue of the Republic: after the arrival of the first tramway line and inauguration of the new Hospital Estaing, in 2010, he soon host the new trade College campus (ESC Clermont). By 2015, 5,000 square meters of offices are also expected. The price per square meter are still soft: 1 400 euros in buildings from 1960 to 1800 euros in those pre-war, like this 51 square meters, renovated, a building 1940, party to 89 000 euros (1745 euros per square meter). But you can bet that the threshold of 2,000 euros per square meter will be reached before the end of 2012 for the most beautiful apartments. Note: If you are looking for a rental investment, canvass the area around the CHU: the prices of small areas are not bad fallen for two years, but not rents. The result yields appear to more than 7% per annum.

Limoges bet on the creation of a TGV line, which would put Paris in two hours

Disoriented by the price decline everywhere in the urban area for a year (- 6% on average), the inhabitants of Limoges in search of a profitable purchase retreated to the downtown, the market stabilized. They better be interested in the station area. In small buildings (five to eight storeys) of the 1970s, the square meter kept them displayed around 1000 euros, 25 to 30% less than in the historic heart. We may even fall below the 900 euros per square meter in family areas requiring odd jobs painting or plumbing. This would prove a very good plan if, as it is discussed, the TGV line project was born 2017: knowing that Paris is now only two hours by train, the corner of the housing would quickly become very taken. “Their rating could easily rise by 10 to 15% within three years,” said Marie-Jose Jeannin, agency Century 21 Real Estate IAA. Tiffany Blandin. (Survey conducted with Century 21 Real Estate IAA)

Le Mans: 15 to 20% of Business School Admission gains to be expected by 2014 in the streets of Mallets

After 20 tumbled 25% in the last two years, property prices finally stabilize Mans. It is the right time to buy. Aim priority areas around the future tram line, by 2014, will connect Bellevue Espal. One of the best moves: the apartments of the 1960s and 1970s in the Rue des Mallets. Still affordable at this time (around 1500 euros per square meter), they could already be worth 15 to 20% more before the tram commissioning. If your budget is too tight, prospecting south of the city, around the freshly inaugurated MMArena. Here is the expansion of the Family Village shopping center that will enhance the odds. Including that of Pontlieue neighborhood and avenues Jean-Jaures and Georges Durand. There are small mancelles early twentieth century, between 1000 and 1500 euros per square meter. The work to be performed are often important, but gains hopes are up.

Rouen new district will break ground near the bridge Levant

It moves around the Levant bridge! Not only the docks will be groomed to make them frequentable, but in ten years, a new district will emerge. A sports hall, a multiplex cinema and offices are already provided in the program, waiting for housing. No doubt, the odds will increase. Take the opportunity to get their hands on one of the houses to retype the corner, offering four to five parts and yet accessible around 180 000. For slightly more expensive (from 1800 to 2000 euros per square meter) and a lot of work, you will also find post-war apartments. A note: the town of Deville-les-Rouen, near, full benefit from these developments. Prices are even sweeter: between 120 000 and 150 000, for example, to a small town house from 80 to 90 square meters. Another significant advantage: it has its own bus network (Teor), which links the center of Rouen in minutes.

Toulon: the passage of the tramway in the Saint John area will boost its prices

We must hurry: in 2013, the center of the law school and the university center of the Guard, east of the city, will be connected by tram. As is often the case, the neighborhoods along the route will appreciate in value. The best placed: St. John, ten minutes from the station, the rating could jump by 10%. In residences of the 1960s and 1970s, many here, the square meter is paid between 1900 and 2200 euros, as this four-piece in fair condition, signed in January to 150 000. For a house of the same time and providing one more piece, counting 240,000 euros. In any case, beware of the lower town, south of the Avenue of the Republic, despite rehabilitation efforts, the market remains sluggish. Although renovated, the property does not go above 1800 euros per square meter.

LDLC, the e-commerce Gold Family

LDLC, the e-commerce Gold Family

This site, set up by two brothers and their sister, became a reference in the sale of computer equipment online. It all began in Lyon, in the family apartment .

“Shhh, listen,” Remi whispered Helmtsetter. Perched on a stairway filled to observe a ray maze of high-tech equipment, we reach the ear for long seconds. Perplexed. The warehouse manager of LDLC.com, large brown to jovial, insists: “You hear? Nothing, not a sound! “And yet we did it ensures the site of Saint-Quentin-Fallavier (Isère) in full swing. “The air of nothing, today we will ship 3500 package.” In fact, it’s an automated system that performs most of the work by routing cartons through a warehouse of 16,000 square meters. Miracle of technology .

The success of LDLC.com is comparable to its logistics center: a deafening silence. In a few years, Lyon has quietly established itself as “the” expert in computer products on the Internet. Its virtual hypermarket has already attracted 1.6 million customers (60% private, 40% of professionals), including 600,000 who provide it regularly. And are willing to pay a little more to be sure to find the gadget of their dreams.

“Today, a computer component on ten sold in France come from us,” says Laurent de la Clergerie (box bears his initials, LDLC), founder and CEO, in his modest office in Ecully, in Lyon suburbs. This grand shy of 41 years runs the business with his sister, Caroline, Executive Director, and his brother, Olivier, CEO. With 169 million euros in revenue in 2010-2011, up from 14% a year ago, this family business is starting to worry his opponents, as RueDuCommerce (€ 353 million), the founder ensures power up to three years.

Valued at 40 million euros on the stock market, LDLC.com saw its increase over 127% in three years. Its history began in 1996 when the Web was still in its infancy. Laurent de la Clergerie, 26, all fresh out of engineering school, then niche chooses as his lifelong passion: computing.

The trio has not yielded to the siren song of the investment fund

In the family apartment in Saint-Didier-au-Mont-d’Or, he set up a sales site, one of the first of its kind. Convinces his father, an executive at Renault to invest 8,000 euros (50,000 francs at the time). It even fits in a scavenger hunt organized by “Paris Match”, is 400 kilometers away and landed 70,000 francs paid to the initial Business School Admission. The material is piled in the garage. “The first clients, I received the pajamas,” he recalls.

Two years later, joined by his brother and sister, he opened a shop in the university district of Lyon for five years, it showcases, warehouse and headquarters. While the internet boom continues, the investment funds are knocking on their door. The trio keeps a cool head, preferring to place 30% of the Business School Admission stock. “When the bubble burst in 2000, our independence is our strength, because we had to be accountable to anyone,” he recalls.

With its 20,000 references, the next treasure trove of LDLC, he has not changed. We can both unearth a battery or a new screen for an ancient computer, the most powerful hard disk or tablet last cry .. “It offers 500 different memory modules, against fifty in others trumpeted the Lawrence Clergerie. People come to us because they know that one has absolutely everything that exists in the market. “A Ecully, a team of ten buyers, one of which is in charge of China, spend the day on the phone with Suppliers. The founder, who love snooping on geeks forums (he has his own, HardWare.fr, the pioneer of the genre, which has 850,000 subscribers), puts his hand to the dough.

But LDLC not content to let its customers in this large virtual bazaar. Although minimalist (unchanged since 2001), its website offers a series of tips to guide the buyer: a module allows to check in three clicks if accessories are compatible with his computer. “Even the experts sometimes need guidance,” says Yann Benoît, in charge of Lyon Shop (LDLC into account another in Paris), where customers can test the equipment and order a custom computer. The service, charged 60 euros, is also available on the website. Since 90% of sales are made online, especially LDLC heals on time delivery. To ensure that customers receive their products within 24 to 48 hours, the site prefer to store a maximum of references. The warehouse is managed by a software designed by ultraperfectionne house experts.

“Logistics is too important to be outsourced,” says the officer. Loïc Bouffard, a used computer expert customer LDLC, confirms: “The state of the stock listed on the website still reflects the reality, there was never any bad surprises.” The highlight of LDLC also shows the limits of its model, which requires to store thousands of references to low spin and charge prices a bit higher than elsewhere. Once a year, besides destocks LDLC in part, in a large market.

Call center, customer service, nothing is outsourced

Last cog in the machine: after-sales service. The company employs about thirty technicians, divided between a call center and a repair service. All experts, recruited after a battery of ultrapointues issues. Example: “A radiator provided to cool on a processor 1156 can it be reused on a socket 1155? Why? “In case of failure, LDLC promises to return the unit one week later against more than three in most competitors. If the repair drags on, it sends a new product: Once repaired, the damaged device used to help another customer. A smart system, which avoids accumulating complaints.

Now the main goal of the family is to increase profitability, still modest (1.8 million euro net profit last year). It has diversified in 2008 in equipment for home with Maginea.com (€ 2 million turnover). “The goal is to build on the existing logistics to distribute products with higher margins than hardware,” said Laurent de la Clergerie. As for the family Business School Admission, “it is not about to touch it,” insists the young CEO. This great online poker player ranked in the top ten in the Poker Stars tournament may well be a follower of the bluff was well want to believe .

EDF’s plan to succeed without its voltage transformation

EDF’s plan to succeed without its voltage transformation

Retirements, technological developments, open competition . Faced with these challenges, the electrician began a great transformation. But to avoid the France Telecom syndrome.

Concentrated around a long dash, five technicians talk quietly. Suddenly, the red lights are flashing wildly. Warning on the cooling circuit

Wafer 4. In seconds, the team identifies the cause of the incident, the emergency procedure determines and initiates the first relief actions.

Welcome to Gravelines, in the north, the heart of the simulator of Europe’s most powerful nuclear power plant. Here everything is “for false.” But EDF employees participating in the exercise will see a considerable challenge. All indeed aspire to become high master technicians in nuclear generation, while most did not have the tray entering the group. “Our 1800 employees receive an average one hundred and twenty hours of training per year,” whispers Beatrice Prud’homme ajointe the director of the plant, which leads the visit. In a corner of the room, the crew chief scans the scene. “While internal promotion means to him the loss of good elements, it is required to help everyone to go as far as possible in their professional development,” says the Number 2 site.

Critical situation. Training, mobility, local management . For two years, he floats an air of cultural revolution at EDF. The world leader in nuclear power – 156,000 employees and 65 billion euros in sales in 2011 – should indeed face a critical situation. About 30% of its workforce will retire within four years. Its advanced technologies are constantly evolving and require the integration of new businesses. Finally, its monopoly position saw his last hours: the electrician, controlled 85% by the state, saw the competition to land in 1999 for business customers in 2007 for individuals, and it is now required to sell at prices costing a quarter of its nuclear output to its competitors.

Discontent growing. To meet this triple challenge, EDF initiated a large change in the management and support of staff. A classic case in public companies (France Telecom, SNCF, La Poste .). The energy group was launched in 1999 in a wave of young graduate recruitment business schools. But given the growing discontent of workers stranded in their progress by this generation of managers from outside, management had to turn back. The training agreement signed in 2005 to foster internal promotion then fizzled – “fault people for relaying,” according to a union – still deteriorating a little more the social climate within the group.

Galvanize the troops. It was not until the arrival of Henri Proglio to head the group in late 2009 for being given a clear direction for the transition. The former CEO of Veolia is to come first with his performance culture. “I want 100% of the market!” He insists symbolically to galvanize his troops. But the question for him to exhibit EDF to the tragedies that shook France Telecom, also engaged in a large of its business transformation program. “The satisfaction of our customers depends primarily on the motivation of our teams, so our social policy and our training,” as he repeated to shade his speech. Henri Proglio intends to take the time to change. Two and a half years after his arrival, he is still some way to go, but a number of projects were launched.

Take “Challenge training,” the ambitious program launched by Henri Proglio in 2010. Since that plan, the training effort was increased to 8% of payroll (€ 450 million per year), which is double the legal minimum. Every week, hundreds of officers from all trades thus follow on the campus of Les Mureaux, near Paris, for three-day sessions. This is first to increase their skills to cope with the arrival of new technologies. Two-thirds of employees work indeed in one of the 240 production jobs (chemist, boilermaker, electromechanical, hydraulic engineer .) or distribution networks.

Building schools. Priority group, each nuclear plant has its “school yard” that all technicians attend two to three weeks a year. But the objective of the plan “Challenge training” is mainly to promote internal mobility. The culture of the promotion was already strong at EDF: 50% of current executives were not entering the group. “But we must extend” says one of them, that yearns to have seen his progress blocked since the State has made the distribution division (ERDF) and that of the electric transport network (TEN ) subsidiaries.

Culture of accompaniment. Of course, EDF continues to recruit from outside, particularly in the new businesses (wind, solar .), where teams are with the arrival of specialists. But in historical activities, human resources departments are requested to hire beginners, especially for technical positions. At these levels, the electrician has been trying for several years to build a culture of support, particularly focusing alternating training. Objective: Forward ensure 25% of recruitments in this way (against 8% currently), from CAP to the Bac + 4. A great way to pass the know-how, since there are thousands of home tutors who take support students during their time in business. Like Michel Kolodziejczak at the Gravelines power plant, responsible for the security of chemical barriers, which bases its lectures on actual cases encountered in his career. About a third of candidates will drop out and a CDI will all operational result.

Meanwhile, the direction progressively infuses the concept of performance to meet the arrival of competition. But France Telecom syndrome requires, it is not a question of encouraging the individual competition. Thus, in the call center of the 20th arrondissement of Paris, it certainly measures the number of problems solved in the first customer call, but together: for example, such a week, the Avron Street exceeds 80% while colleagues Roubaix is ​​78%. Ditto for the duration of statements to customers and solving connection problems: Performance technicians ERDF are calculated by local units.

Negotiate the best prices. Individual awards nevertheless citizenship in some commercial services. In particular benefit those responsible for major accounts. Or the big heads of the trading cell, immersed in the heart of the fierce competition between producers of electricity and gas. Their daily challenge: negotiate the price most advantageous to meet large demand and counter offers from the competition, while ensuring the best margins. EDF remains discreet about its commercial forms of remuneration, but the variable portion could reach 15%. Certainly, it is far from 30 or 40% practiced in most large groups, but for a public company, the progress is notable.

To maintain balance between race performance and well-being of employees, Henri Proglio wants to create an army of local managers. These will be 12,000 by 2016. Close the field, they must ensure that teams follow. Most are trained Mureaux center, in the Yvelines. “We are preparing for project management, social dialogue, the animation team in crisis management, mobility of employees,” explains David Jestaz, head of campus. The basics of the job . “It must be said that from afar, recognizes a Lyon frame. Previously, management at EDF was essentially to validate administrative procedures. “

human-sized platters. The call center, one of the most exposed to stress professions, are thus now grouped in units of 15 or 20 people. It is three or four times less than the traditional telephone vast plateaus. At their head, a proximity manager. “Their role is to ensure the quality of working conditions, to arrange schedules, to support people who wish to specialize . But they must also improve customer relations,” says Philippe Monloubou, the director of the trade branch EDF. This new generation of managers is also responsible for hiring candidates from CAP and tank levels. For supervisors and managers, however, is a national commission decides. “These are the limits of our local management laments Jean-Jacques Boue, head of the CGT training issues. In the field of human resources, too many decisions are centralized. “

Even if improvements are to be made, the situation of EDF employees is enviable in terms of 20,000 subcontractors employees who maintain the facilities. The courses are much more random and more harsh working conditions for them and for officers of the house. “EDF requires subcontractors deadlines shorter and shorter during annual maintenance shutdowns of the reactors, for obvious reasons of profitability, denouncing a former engineer of the north central of France. As if postponing any economic pressure on its subcontractors to provide better protection internally. “

The end of a taboo? Employees outsourced complain about having to rush their work, endangering their safety and the safety of the site. For close to EDF management, outsourcing is no longer a taboo subject within the company: a reflection was even involved the possibility to bring back some in-house activities. But that issue, like many others on the nuclear industry, will be settled after lengthy discussions with the state shareholder. This is something that she is not about to change.

The biscuits are Lenôtre oven

The biscuits are Lenôtre oven

Austerity forces, companies carve in their reception budgets. This does not suit the famous caterer, forced to find new revenue management.

What strategy will it follow the direction to boost sales?

Scenario  1: Yielding shops to refocus solely on receptions.

Scenario 2: Engage in social and outsource part of the production.

Scenario 3: Keep all activities with their numbers, but rationalize.

Lenôtre chose Scenario 3.

This is not invented. Lenôtre workshops are installed . Plaisir, near Paris. And from 6 am, the commotion of battle. 350 cooks are activated. In the basement, dozens of little hands peel fresh vegetables, cut pieces of meat . Upstairs, thirty load chocolates, forty deal with desserts and macaroons, as “the hive “assembles canapes.

Always with a taste of sophistication: the ice cream is made with pear crops Potager du Roi (Versailles), almonds are caramelized in copper vats . “Our DNA is the quality guarantees proudly CEO, Laurent Le Fur. The house can become a war machine, but it requires very careful management, otherwise it is flu easily. “

ITS OWNER,  the Sodexo Group, knows something: since the canteen has provided catering in 2011, savored! In terms of prestige, no complaints: stars brigade (Guy Krenzer, Michel Roth .) and VIP activities (shops in uptown, receptions in ministries) . everything is there!

> You prefer the homemade? Find video courses to achieve your foie gras: (Click on the image to launch the video)

But the financial side, it is not at the party: in three years, the caterer has accumulated over 15 million euros in losses, for a turnover of 103 million euros in 2014. “This year, for the first time, the company will make money, “says the daughter of the founder of Sodexo Nathalie Szabo-Bellon, Sodexo CEO of Sports and Recreation. For 2015, management announced a turnover of 104 million euros and an operating profit ironed in the green. However, an undeniable best, insufficient: the shareholder had to put the hand in the pocket and reBusiness School Admissionize its subsidiary.

Lenôtre, yet it is a great story. That of a Norman pastry chef, Gaston came to try his luck in Paris in 1957. He opened a shop rue d’Auteuil, quickly successful meeting, then opens a reception activity, opening stores abroad . the development is bold. A little too much: the mid-1980s already, Gaston should call the Accor Group to the rescue. “We launched a savings plan, streamlined the organization and reignited the trade agreement until the World Cup 1998!” Says one elder.

In the 2000s, Lenôtre begins to invest, buying back Fauchon shops, multiplying international partnerships . The history repeat itself? “When we bought the company Accor in 2011, she was in a difficult situation, highly leveraged,” says Nathalie Bellon-Szabo. Clash of cultures undoubtedly, the group is in any case time to take things in hand. “We do not want to be brutal, shows the shareholder. The priority was to preserve the talent, now we apply our management skills. “

First project: the receiving business, a segment weakened since 2008. Private and public institutions, all reduced their mouth fresh. Consider this: for his cocktail of July 14, the city of Paris is negotiating free champagne and petit fours against a highlighting of the supplier!

In addition, competition has hardened. Last year, home Fauchon and Lenôtre blown his contract covered 7,000 at Roland Garros. “Yet it was the first time she took part in our consultations,” says Bastien Laurichesse, the French Tennis Federation. “The Paris market becoming very competitive, we seek to organize more events abroad,” said Laurent Le Fur. Especially, Sodexo and Lenôtre join forces to multiply the catering contracts in stages: the canteen, meals to the public; the caterer, the service reserved for personalities.

OTHER BLACK POINT  recent years: the shops. “The customer declined by 5% per year,” admits Laurent Le Fur.

First, the offer was so abundant that it became confused: appetizers, cold dishes, pastries, cakes . all offered whatever the size of stores, or 90 300 square meters. “We clarified the board, with 30% less revenue, and adapted assortments to spaces and neighborhoods,” continues the CEO.

Then, some prices were a little difficult to digest in times of austerity. Count 70 euros Autumn Leaf Cake star of the house, eight or nine people. No way to plane labels, but the house is now developing smaller, more affordable products, like a bag of pretzels chocolate to 6.50 euros, cleverly installed near the cash register. Result? Two of the fifteen shops remain threatened, but attendance is generally ironed in the green.

The log Hermes 130 euros

Last strategic issue: to sort through the myriad of more secondary activities. The management would boost profitable business, such as licenses with industry – the cook develops products for Labeyrie Bridor (Groupe Le Duff) and Barry Callebaut – or training school. It already hosts 3,000 professionals annually.

Conversely, Sodexo is considering settle less promising activities, such as delivery of meal trays or catalogs of corporate gifts. “Nothing is settled, said Nathalie Bellon-Szabo. But the momentum is there. “So .

A slight improvement after 3 years of losses:

2012  : € 5.5 million loss

in 2013  : 6.8 million euros of losses

in 2014  : € 3.3 million loss

in 2015  : 1.8 million euros in profits