NAME: Ingrid Gerencser
BACKGROUND: Technical university
POSITION: Owner, managing partner
ORGANISATION: GEPA pictures
My Background and Career
After graduating from technical university the time was ripe – in theory – for me to set up my own business. We began our business in Weiz (a region near Graz) and operated at first solely within that region. The area quickly became too small for us and so we made the decision to move to Graz where little by little we were able to establish ourselves. Why did I want to set up my own company? There were four children in my family and when I was 6 years old; my mother became a single mother. For me myself, I wanted more !
The first 10 years, maybe even the first 12, were marked by major financial limitations. Establishing contacts and a building a good network was also a huge drain on my energy, which in turn placed limitations on my family and private life. At the start we needed decide what to specialise in….sport, music or fashion. The Austrian market, small though it is, allowed us to earn enough to survive by specialising in media. I never had the advantage of having a mentor or patron. I find it fantastic that nowadays there is so much more support on offer.
The three most important skills and abilities for me and my company are: organisational skills, lateral thinking and the ability to form a sense of a shared identity. As well as these, my perseverance and courage particularly in the early stages of forming the company were extremely important. At a later stage, my professional relationships and contacts (networks) as well as financial funding were of major benefit.