Getting to know Ferruccio Fiordispini of our new Emergenetics International – Italy office!
Ferruccio has more than 25 years business experience in international management, general management, marketing and human resources development, aided by a fluency in Italian, English and German.
As Country Representative for Emergenetics International’s Italian operations, he leads the strategic development and business operations in Italy. A fully certified Emergenetics associate since 2010, Ferruccio grew as an advanced associate and now is a master associate. He was a trainer and the director of the business school founded by the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna of Pisa.
Ferruccio has a MBA from Milan Publitalia ’80 Business School and graduated summa cum laude in Economics at the University of Perugia. He served as a trainer at the Academy of Guardia di Finanza and is currently an international trainer at AFS Intercultural Programs, a voluntary, non-governmental, non-profit organization that provides intercultural learning opportunities.
You’ve been a friend of Emergenetics for many years. How long has it been and how were you first introduced to Emergenetics?
Well, I got my first Profile in 1998. At that time, I used to work for the renowned “Rocky Mountains” Coors Brewery, as a country manager in Italy. The head of Europe, Robb Caseria, invited Geil to facilitate a Meeting of the Minds for the entire European management team. In that occasion it was my turn to organize the company event, and we held it in Perugia, few miles away from Assisi, where I live and where we had our last Brain Summit.
I was really fascinated by Geil, her program and the Emergenetics Profile. Since then, I have always brought my Profile with me almost as an “identity card”!
And in fact, you’re quoted in Dr. Geil Browning’s book, Emergenetics: Tap Into the New Science of Success, aren’t you?
Some years later Geil wrote her book, and she included an episode from the Coors European meeting in Perugia. You can find this story at page 263.
Funny is to know how I have used this “privilege.” In 2010 I realized that Emergenetics started activities in Europe. Actually, I got this information by chance. A friend of mine and old colleague (at Bristol-Myers Squibb, a totally different kind of business…but the world is really small!) sent me Christmas greetings using his new email address having the domain emergenetics.com. When I called him to ask why that casual combination, he proudly explained to me that he was starting operations in Europe for this American HR firm. I replied him even more proudly by saying: “Ron…’I am’ in the book!” Since then, each time I meet somebody who is excited about being an Emergenetics associate or employee, I always claim “I am in the book!”
Tell us about the first time you saw your Emergenetics Profile. And would you mind sharing your favorite aspect of your own Profile?
I am a tri-modal thinker: conceptual, analytical and social preferences. My behavioral attributes are 3,2,2. As I said it was a great experience and discovery for me, when I first met Emergenetics. Later, as an executive, I tried to use Emergenetics in the various companies I was working with. However, there was not yet a team of Italian or European trainers, so each time I had to accept the alternatives proposed by my HR colleagues. I was never really fully satisfied with these “surrogates”, but at least I was able to let my people get exposed to their four quadrant model. Once that Geil’s book was published, I recommended people to read it, and I personally started to use it to integrate the information received from other tools with the behavioral preferences and the numerous anecdotes and evidences from neuroscience.
You recently became an Emergenetics Master Trainer. Did you encounter any interesting Emergenetics “ah-ha” moments during that process?
Well…the most astonishing “ah-ah” moment was when I had to sing as a tenor “Emergenetics Plus!” to the tune of Puccini’s opera wearing a roman toga during the new Master Trainer show in Assisi. My “ah-ah” moment was that I realized I was totally out of tune! … I am afraid… even out of shape!
Can you tell us about your favorite moment using Emergenetics in a training scenario (workshop or personal coaching, etc.)?
I have enjoyed particularly using Emergenetics in strategic business planning. It happened to me to have two small companies asking me for a consulting service re. their strategic development. I am a fan and an expert of the Balanced Scorecard methodology, which creates a visual mapping and the best conditions for execution alignment. However, this requires the capability of the management team in brainstorming, analyzing, discussing and planning together. Small companies typically don’t do this, the owner tends to decide and plan by his own. Well, thanks to the Meeting of the Minds I was able to prepare the management team in effectively working together. Just a couple of days after the MOTM, we started the meetings about strategic planning, with astonishing results in terms of cooperation and added value.
What is your training philosophy?
Take it easy…and have fun!
Do either of you have a favorite Emergenetics activity or exercise?
No doubt…”If this room were a brain.” Really impactful and effective!
What is your vision for Emergenetics International – Italy?
I am the country representative in Italy since 2013. So far I have acted as a non-exclusive sub licensee. I have shared this role with other activities. I have now got the opportunity to become an exclusive license holder and therefore I am focusing 100% of my time, attention, dedication and expertise in developing the Emergenetics activities in Italy.
My vision is to make Emergenetics the most renowned and appreciated provider of psychometric tools and methods based on neuroscience for selecting, onboarding, developing and training people.
What is the talent development industry like in Italy? And what does this mean for Emergenetics?
Italy is a very difficult market for this kind of tools. Some famous competitors have brutally exploited it in the last few years, applying aggressive commercial policies, and creating a lot of perplexities in many potential users. The last 7 years of uninterrupted economic crisis have been very tough, and as you can imagine companies have drastically cut the investments in HR development. Last but not least, most Italian companies are small-medium, so not really oriented towards this kind of methodologies.
Said that, I would like to highlight that Italy is still the fourth economy in Europe in terms of GDP, the second manufacturing economy in Europe, one of the top ten economies in the world. The fact of having so many small-medium companies is a limitation, but also an opportunity, because they have to do something positive with their personnel to maintain a competitive position and ultimately to survive.
What are you most excited about bringing Emergenetics to the people of Italy?
I think that a lot of opportunities can arrive by using ESP as a support for selection processes. Italian companies do not tend to use tests to hire people, at least experienced people. I have gone through several selection tests as a candidate, but only when hired by foreign companies. Getting to know the hidden part of a candidate “iceberg” is a great added value.
Any dream clients?
I would love to introduce the Youth Profile and the STEP process in the Italian schools. My opinion is that the level of education in Italy, especially in the elementary and high schools, is one of the best in the world. However, the standard teaching methodologies are still too old fashioned, based on the typical structured learning process. Emergenetics can provide a great help in improving the capabilities of teachers in adjusting their methods according to the kid’s preferences.
What are your hobbies/ activities which you enjoy to do in your leisure time?
I am a sport fun. I regularly practice triathlon, even at national level, though never winning a race. I love reading and watching movies. As a volunteer, I am an active member of the Lions Club and AFS Intercultural Learning.
What do you do for personal and/or professional development? Do you have any favorite books, podcasts, or blogs?
As I said, I invest on my continuous growth by reading a lot, especially in psychology, philosophy, history, anthropology, neurosciences. Furthermore, I always attend many training courses and seminars as a trainee.
What is your favorite quote?
“Know Thyself” ( γνῶθι σεαυτόν) and “Nothing in Excess” (μηδέν άγαν), both maxims inscribed in the forecourt of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi in Greece.
Anything else we should know?
My first experience as a trainer was during my military service. I was an officer (lieutenant) at the Academy of an Italian Police Corps (Guardia di Finanza), 30 years ago. At that time, in that environment, my “training style” had to be quite different to the current one.