STIRIXIS Group is a strategy and design firm focused on creating True Prosperity for its clients. In collaboration with its clients, STIRIXIS Group plans designs, and manages business ideas worldwide, in the retail, HoReCa, leisure, education, and other industries including the workplace. The company has completed more than 750 projects in more than 25 countries over the past 27 years.
Prompted by the company’s recent success in the International Property Awards, where they earned the “Best Office Interior Award” for the workpalce design of TUV AUSTRIA HELLAS’ headquarters, we spoke with the President and CEO of STIRIXIS, Mr. Alexander Athanassoulas, about “True Prosperity” which constitutes the purpose of the company.
What does True Prosperity mean to you?
I’ll tell you what it it is and what it is not so that I am perfectly clear. True Prosperity is found in the set of goals that together create the ideal environment that we all desire. It is the combination of organic growth, sustainable development, long-term success, and financial health. It is the ethical, meaningful, and honest alignment of a vision with customers, the market, and internally with a company’s people, that produces resilience and flexibility through feedback and constant change. It is the point where everything makes sense, the raison d’être of a business that makes people proud and leaves its f on a personal, professional, and societal level.
On the other hand, True Prosperity is not ephemeral profitability, profitability at the expense of a business, its people or society. It’s not the unhealthy growth that is achieved at the e of the viability of the company or success that is achieved in an analytical way, looking at 2-3 KPIs and not at the business as a whole.
Can you tell us three things that you often see in businesses today that prevent them from creating True Prosperity?
In today’s environment, where the pace of change is accelerated, it is paramount to understand that businesses need to operate as a system. However, what I see is the majority of businesses dealing with challenges in an analytical way, as if they do not affect each other or the whole business. The result is multiple, disconnected projects, lack of communication between departments, lack of shared vision. When businesses deal with challenges analytically, in solos, resources are wasted, internal disharmony is created and a growth becomes increasingly difficult. In this same context, businesses focus almost exclusively on profitability, without aiming to create an environment capable and determined to produce long-term value for their customers, which will bring this profitability safely and organically. Finally, the accelerating pace of change has created insecurity and a lack of leadership. The vision of the company seems to be increasingly limited to shorter and shorter time frames, and to smaller and smaller parts of the business. In doing so, a business reduces its potential for Prosperity.
You mentioned the speed of change today. How is True Prosperity affected by this speed and the constant challenges that seem to be its by-product?
The accelerating speed of change, coupled with the ambiguity and insecurity they create, leads humans down one of two pathways, or sometimes both. Pathway number one is passivity and numbness. Pathway number two is the constant preoccupation with the urgent, daily issues: putting out one fire after the other. But in this ‘reality’, there is no space for the important decision and vision of the company. Thus, they are sacrificed and the business is quickly driven to a dead end. At STIRIXIS Group, we have created a holistic model to address these challenges, in order to effectively support leaders to achieve their goals for True Prosperity. We simultaneously deal with both the daily burning issues and the charting of the company’s long-term path, creating synergies that transform the company both internally and externally.
What steps do you take to drive businesses to True Prosperity?
We have developed a 7-step model that starts from the strategic analysis and the specific characteristics of a business and its culture, to planning, execution, management and finally, the continuous redefinition of goals to stay ahead. In this model. we take into account all long-term trends, international or local, a study that is our special ThinkTank Metallaxis (metallaxis.org) delivers. Our experience from 29 countries and almost 800+ projects in different sectors has given us a broad knowledge and understanding at the operational level and in relation to international markets, consumer behaviours, and trends. Today, we work with STIRIXIS (stirixis.com) for projects in Retail, HoReCa, and workplaces and also have a specialized unit for private areas of homes, and yachts.