I’d like to share this amazing interview I had with Mr. Sezer. I believe he’ll be an inspiration to all of us with his education life. I’d like to thank him for this interview.
Tell us about yourself?
Hi. I was born in 1981 in Istanbul. I started my work life in media sector at Akşam Publishing Group in my university years. At that time, I prepared and edited pages for computers and technology for Canteen which was popular back then. Radio-Tv programs, they all were great experiences.
Later on, I decided to move on the marketing field and there began my Samsung story. I started working as eleventh employee of Samsung Türkiye. You know the rest. 8 years later, I had a great time while working at Yandex Türkiye for 2 years. There is also the Executive MBA at Koç University. It was one of the most instructive times of my life. And I’m a part of the Huawei family for 3 years.
Tell us about your education life. How were you as a student? Did you have a specific career goal through this period of your life? What did you do to reach such goals?
I was a good student till high school. The most important reason was that there was nothing better to do. Later, I’ve been in a phase in which I strayed from my education life. Such things like technology, computers, softwares got into my life in my high school years. I graduated Statisctics from Yıldız Technical University.
I wasn’t really a good student in university. Because I had much more important stuff to take care of. I always had career plans but I never once put myself in a stable place. If you don’t have any goals that you have to devote yourself into such as being a doctor, teacher, lawyer, pilot, soldier or an academic career, you have to find your own way in the crowd. Turkey is the country for statisticians, engineers that do the marketing work.
There was a phase in which I had to work really really hard to reach the goal. At that time, i tried to balance my private life with the work life. Then, I realized that it was important to work efficiently, that it was important to focus on the topic that matter instead of unnecessary details. It is imperative to be in the right place at the right time, too.
Sometimes, one has to create their own luck. One should always know that there are better people than themselves. But, to me, most important thing is change. Change is not an enemy of a person but a great helper. You have to manage the “change”. There’ll be times when you’ll have to resist or stop when need be and choose the other way. But in the final analysis, to change oneself and things is important itself.
What about your work life? How do you spend your day of work?
To me, team spirit is crucial. Every single individual in the team is truly valuable. In fact, we are all pieces of a whole. I never believe in vertical organization. It’s an ancient system. Manager, director, etc. They are all on the business cards now, which nobody really does care about them. You have to take on the responsibility, be a part of the work. Everybody should be responsible and efficient in their own fields. I can’t possibly know better about what my teammate does better than himself. A manager has to remove the obstacles on the way and create a healthy playground. I’m currently traveling so much as being mobile is essential nowadays. Every day is different day for me. Work life is no longer monotone and it should not be.
What do you do in your free time apart from work?
Sports, gym, model-crafting from time to time. I do pencil drawing. Apart from those, I do research on my field. But more importantly, I think and read about what’s going to happen 10-20 years later from now. How wil the earth be? How will we be as the citizens of the Earth? Particularly, I tell the students of the high schools and universities that they are witnessing an incredible change and they will witness through the years to come.
All the fields of work and their descriptions might change in the next 20 years. The quickly changing of the world might be hard to cope with. This might mean a great opportunity, but at the same time, a great risk. Which job fields the machines will take from us, the artificial intelligence, singularity. We have to think through all of these and direct our career plans considering these.
How did your path cross with Huawei?
Huawei is one of the biggest technology companies. The desire to expand in the mobile phone is what made us come together 3 years ago. It made me really excited and then our partnership began. Now I’m in charge of marketing activities Middle Asia and Caucasian Region.
Can you tell us about marketing subtleties and what you place importance on in marketing strategies?
Marketing is a deep topic. Yes, it is a subtle work. There are also mathematics and technology in it, after all. Choosing the right product, investing in the right field, convincing the right people by giving them the right messages… Whilst doing these, the resources are always limited.
Should we be ambitious? What’s your perspective on being ambitious?
To an extent. It is true that life is a race. It might be such cliche but we are our own opponents. If we rather think about what we do and how to do better than what others do, we might use our energy efficiently. On the other hand, work life might be a little harsh. Everybody, even the ones you are so close to, might not think the same way as you.
At least, it is beneficial to defend yourself, your ideas, what you believe in, what your game is, It is much more important to be stubborn than to be ambitious. Be stubborn about what you believe in and go the whole nine yards. I honestly think that a complete rubbish is better than a half done perfect. Being over ambitious is obviously unhealthy and detrimental.
Entrepreneurship is the most common job word of the last 10 years. What should a young person do to become an entrepreneur?
Everybody is an entrepreneur now. Professional life has changed. Those who adapt become successful. Companies no longer need eight to five shift, or positions with a thick lining around them or job descriptions. Mobility and self discipline are a thing now. Position basis responsibilities has already left their places to project management. There are now short, middle or long term projects. Professionals who adapt already move with the entrepreneur reflexes. We are in an era in which nobody tells you what to do, your manager is interested in the results instead of the process. Today’s companies need to be innovative.Innovation means enterprise. Now is the time of professionals who see the opportunity and use the resources wisely they take from their bosses and make the company earn more money. In the near future, terms like professional, employee might cease existing. You should pay attention to the term “crowdsource”. People around the world who doesn’t even know each other can come together and work a software project and develop it. Because, why not?
What do you look for in the youth that is about to start working?
Be willing, have a good communication, know what they want, have dreams, hobbies and an idea and a perspective of life.
Can you give advices from your life?
Don’t be afraid of mistakes. It’s alright unless you hurt yourself or any other person. They teach you and years show you what’s wrong and what’s right. The biggest “I wish” might turn into a great “fortunately”. Be brave and just work efficiently.