Green – laying the foundations for new worlds
Mr. Süess, the world is in turmoil, uncertainty is weighing heavily on mood and morale, and Green is continuing to grow at a fast pace. Where are you at?
Well, at Green we’re not at any one place – we’re constantly moving forward! On a macrocultural level, all of us are moving toward a new era of humanity with digitalization, with AI catapulting us head-first into other dimensions. We’re facing a new industrial revolution with Web 3.0, and right bang in the middle of the action is Green. This is our opportunity, our motivation, but it also poses a challenge for our culture, our employees, our customers, and our partners.
"We combine the vision of the big with the agility of the small."
Roger Süess, CEO Green
In what way?
To succeed in this setting, you need to be purpose-driven and have an exceptional corporate culture. For companies in the service sector, this may seem far from straightforward at first. We’re not making smartphones for people, no emotionally attractive products, nothing really tangible, and we don’t “feed a world”, yet: By building – to put it in simple terms – highly complex, intelligent concrete blocks, we’re laying the all-important foundations for new worlds. As I always say to our employees, to motivate them: You are important; you are right at the forefront of progress; with us, you are the pioneers of the new world.
What’s important to you as a leader?
I think our slogan sums it up best: moving. forward. together. What’s important is that we inspire ourselves and others, that we strive to move things forward, that we are agile, flexible, and always open to new ideas. That we are forward-looking, innovation-driven, and opportunity-focused and future-oriented in our approach. And that we always work together to achieve our goals. At Green, we are very much team-oriented: We work in small teams, as departments, across departments, as a company, and across the entire ecosystem. Here, too, we focus on “togetherness”, working with our customers, suppliers, and partners to develop solutions and to find new ways of collaborating as equals. We promote a culture of motivation, which we leverage to assess and shape the future of all stakeholders together with them: moving. forward. together.
Are you looking for new challenges?
Why is Green growing at such a rapid pace?
This is first and foremost quite simply down to the macro trend of digitalization, new service models, and, of course, our customized market services.
Secondly, it’s down to the backlog in enterprises and state and private-sector organizations developing and implementing their cloud strategy. We’re perfectly positioned here because we offer all forms of cloud solutions and provide companies with information about these solutions, including everything they need to know about the possibilities and opportunities that the different clouds offer for their digital transformation. What’s more, everyone benefits from the advantages of Switzerland as a data location.
Thirdly, another equally important reason: Being able to offer everything perfectly in line with the relevant market and customer requirements necessitates the appropriate financial means. Green’s owners and management are keen to be at the top of their game when it comes to digitalization, and are prepared to invest accordingly. The management team is all about hard work, dedication, and passion; the company’s investors have the necessary financial strength and vision. Sustainable successful growth requires both money and passion.
Green is growing - data center capacity in MW
What sets Green apart?
What I think is great about Green – and that I think makes us pretty savvy – is how we combine the vision of a big corporation with the agility of a small company. We’ve retained our start-up mentality, while the whole time building up the kind of ambitious vision and dynamism that usually only the biggest players dare to pursue. We work closely and personally with customers in both the retail and enterprise sectors. At the same time – and this is what has helped us most of all – we also work on a par with the leading cloud providers, or “hyperscalers”, and are collaborating with them to develop the next generation of data centers.
Are you facing any particular challenges?
Yes, of course. In addition to the same challenges that everyone else is currently facing – the difficult economic environment, the aftermath of COVID, climate change, raw material shortages, sustainability measures – one of the biggest challenges for us is learning to perceive the constant cultural change in our high-speed business not as a nightmare, but as an opportunity. We want to develop our culture in such a way that as many of our people as possible see the opportunities in change, exploit the potential, and, with an internalized entrepreneurial mindset, approach everything that's new together and positively. Along the lines of: “Come on, let’s give it a go!”, rather than just saying: “It’s not possible!” So, when I see a wall, I see a ladder, a rope, a stirrup – and not an insurmountable obstacle. It’s about having a can-do attitude, where it doesn’t matter if you make mistakes, because you know you’re in the “psychological safety” of the company and your teams.
"Sustainable successful growth needs both: financial resources and passion."
Roger Süess, CEO Green
If your company were a sport, which sport would it be: rowing or soccer?
It’s all about having the right team in place and good teamwork: people to defend at the back, others to do a lot of the running about, others to score goals, and someone to protect the goal. Where success is down to the team as a whole, but also to ensuring you have the right people in the various different positions who are excellent at what they do, who have their own ideas, but who are also good team players. Team sports are a good analogy for us. It’s always going to be the case that something or other goes wrong at some point or other for someone in the team. So, what do the others in the team do then? Do they jump on the poor guy when he’s down, or do they give him a hand up? Do they try to help him, or even try to put right his mistake?
Rowing isn’t a good sports analogy for us. In an eight, everyone sits in a row, all doing the same thing, and that’s what makes us different to rowers: We have different people with different skills in different positions, but a common goal that everyone works toward achieving as a team. Again, the clue’s in our slogan: “together”. We’re very much like a football team.
We move in an extremely fast-paced world and our field of activity is highly innovative. While it’s important we keep our sights very firmly on the goal firmly in our sights, it's also vital that we’re able to constantly adapt to new situations on the field and choose the right combination of players and strategy at all times. This agility, together with first-rate employees, is a key factor in our success.
You have the means, the people, the vision: Where is your journey headed?
First of all, we want to remain the Swiss champion in our business and to ensure that the process of digitalization is as sleek and smooth as possible for companies and state and private institutions throughout Switzerland. In the longer term, we would naturally love to attract the whole of Europe over to us in Switzerland – but of course we’re just as happy to be the ones to make the move toward Europe.
How can we take you further?