Salvatore’s secrets for running a high performing business with 100% employee engagement

Salvatore Curaba
Salvatore Curaba is the founder of EASI and a reference in terms of successful company management! Discover his magic recipe here.
Do you know Salvatore Curaba? He is a reference in terms of successful company management! In 1999, he founded EASI, an I.T. company. Today, EASI has 360+ employees and has won a large series of awards:
 
✅  Best Workplace (7 years in a row)
✅  HR team of the year
✅  Company of the year
✅  Best managed company
 
Salvatore is also the founder of “la RAAL” football club and the co-author of the book “On m’a pris pour un fou”.
 
The secret of this success? We’ve got the chance to interview Salvatore so he could reveal us his magic recipe. Discover his answers on the following topics 👇🏻

Table of Contents

1. What are the 5 pillars of success for any company?

For Salvatore, the guarantee of success for a company, regardless of the sector, is to bring together people who:

👍 have the same human values

💪 are capable of making great efforts

🗂 set up a solid organisation

💬 share and communicate 

😃 do everything to make the others happy

With such a team, nothing’s impossible.

2. What are your 5 ingredients for happiness, essential to anyone?

 

During a meeting with his collaborators, Salvatore asked the question “why do we feel good at EASI?”. 5 key words came up, which are for them the 5 ingredients for happiness.

These 5 ingredients are the basic needs found in everyday life:

👏 Recognition

🙋🏻 Autonomy

🗣 Transparency

🚀 Mission

❤️ Love

3. What do you think about the work-life balance?

If at a certain point […] we are as happy at work as we are with our families, there is no [need to make this split between the professional and private life]

Salvatore tries to not make a difference between professional and private, because for him, you have to be in the company like you are with your family and friends. We are sharing this adventure together.

Salvatore’s order of priority ?

1️⃣ Family

2️⃣ Work

3️⃣ Leisure

4. Why do you promote love in the professional context?

It is because Salvatore doesn’t make a difference between the professional world and the private world.

When I see my collaborators, I feel […] this benevolent love, we are happy to see each other. I consider [some of my collaborators] almost as my family. […] For me this should be normality.”

5. Why never hire managers externally?

According to Salvatore, hiring externally is like telling collaborators that they are incompetent and not capable of carrying out the job. It is the main role of a manager to train his successors. At EASI, they manage to have a lot of extremely competent people and to keep them because of this system. It is a huge recognition for employees.

There is nothing more frustrating when you give your all in a company, you are performing well and you want to evolve and then you see an external manager who has not yet done anything for the company, who earns more than you and who is going to boss you around, it is just a torture

6. Performance or happiness?

For Salvatore, the two are linked: if we don’t perform well, happiness will suffer. And performance gives meaning to everything we do.

I never ask myself the question: “What should I do to make my employees happy?” It has to become natural.

7. What do you think about liberated companies?

The notion of liberated companies bothers me a lot. […] It is a bit of a negative connotation saying “each employee does what he wants” but with us it’s just the opposite

EASI is a hierarchical company, where they have procedures for everything. Therefore, Salvatore doesn’t like to speak about freedom, he would prefer the notion of autonomy. He considers EASI as a participative company rather than a liberated one.

8. What are the 5 essential human values that all collaborators share?

I am not interested in having a successful company if I am not happy, and to be happy I need to be surrounded by people who share certain human values

For Salvatore, there are five indispensable values:

🤝 respect

✌ equality

👍 positive spirit

✍ sense of responsibility

🙌 loyalty

At EASI, they recruit first on the basis of these values, before looking at the skills. Human values are intrinsic, while skills can keep developing over time.

9. Is effort essential to success?

Without effort, we get nowhere.

Effort is important to be able to enjoy the success. Salvatore thinks that it has to be difficult otherwise we won’t even enjoy it. He values those who make the most effort, they are the ones who should receive the most benefits and opportunities to evolve.

10. Does the collective interest take priority over the individual interest?

For Salvatore, the interest of the company always takes precedence over individual interests.

We must consider the company as a tribe and I feel like the leader of the tribe and I must protect each member of my tribe but not at the expense of the tribe itself.

11. The major decision that has transformed EASI…

In 2011, Salvatore decided to implement the employee-shareholder model. He wanted his employees to have the possibility of becoming shareholders of EASI. By doing so, he realized that the fact of sharing and living an adventure with other people, has led the company to a faster growth and has brought him a lot of happiness and meaning to his life.

If I had kept all these shares, if I had not implemented this model, today we would be a company of maybe 50-70, but now we are more than 300, we plan to be 500 in the years to come.

12. What motivated you to completely give up control of the company?

It wasn’t easy and I’m very proud to have done it!

Letting go of power was not easy for Salvatore. But for him, the role of a manager is to train his staff and to make sure that his employees one day become better than him. He sees himself more as a mentor now.

It’s a bit of a problem with human nature to stay at the top of the pyramid […] whereas the best thing is to give confidence to your collaborators who, in the end, do better than you.

13. Do we need passion at work?

You should never consider your job as a work. […]. What you have to remember is that you don’t have to be passionate to start something, passion can come as you go along.

According to Salvatore, companies have to create conditions so that their people become passionate.

14. To what extent is EASI transparent?

Transparency is important to avoid frustration, especially in terms of hierarchy and salary. At EASI, they are very clear on the different hierarchical levels and the salary we have in each level/category. They don’t make any exception.

Everyone knows more or less the salary of each person […] we know that being in this category we have that salary.

15. What advice would you give to any company?

The key message of Salvatore is that people’s potential is enormous. The role of companies is to ensure that this potential is used and to create all the conditions to reach it.

“an employee may be at 50-60% and it is up to the company to ensure that he or she reaches 70, 80 and 90%. “

As you can see, a large part of EASI’s success comes from its focus on people. And you, are you 100% aligned with your team? Do you share the same values? eBloom can help you find it out. Book a demo and we’ll explain how.

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