-How do you assess the last business year for Stopanska banka - Bitola? Are projected goals realized?

Gordna Baltovska, MA: Last year was quite successful for the Bank. We made efforts to track modern banking requirements, offers of new products and services and to improve the existing to create additional value both for our clients and Bank. In a dynamic environment we demonstrated high level of responsiveness to the changes thus ending 2017 with increased number of clients, enlarged deposit, growth of the lending activity and positive financial result or gross earnings amounting to MKD 46.38  million. This resulted in achieving solid realization of the key planned objectives with acceptable deviation of +/- 5%. We also increased our market share and consequently we affirmed our strong commitment for further growth and strengthening our position within the group of mid-sized banks.

-What is in the focus of STBB growth and development this year and in the forthcoming period?

Natasha Nestorovska PhD: In the future period we remain focused on improving the clients’ experience with the products and services offered by the Bank as grounds for further growth and development. We will offer attractive deposit products, create good corporate projects with acceptable risk level, satisfy households’ financial needs, monitor the market and clients’ needs through introducing new innovative banking technologies. We also plan cooperation with international financial institutions to obtain inexpensive sources of funds mainly in the part of lending support to investments for households in energy efficiency as well as credit lines for support of industry development. We will intensively work on improving the loan portfolio quality and total assets through collection of nonperforming debts and sales of foreclosed property. All this will contribute to further improvement of the performances and keep on a long year trend of continuous growth and development of the Bank.

-What are the key points for reliance of the Bank policy and social responsibility and what is the position of stimulation of gender equality in this issue?

Gordana Baltovska, MA: In Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola, we position the foundations of social responsibility in the relations with our employees. Building good relations based on confidence and trust are key driver for a company to assume social responsibility. This way exactly, through mutual daily activities, we build the strategy to position socially responsible activities in the core of our operations.  Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola perceives the wide picture behind the term social responsibility. The point of a social responsible business does not only include provision of donations as is understood by many.  Above all, the Bank protects the society interests and of any individuals in the society including its employees and clients.  The Bank Strategy of Social Responsibility is founded on transparent and ethical conduct with continuous care for social, cultural and economic issues concerning the society and us as a part of it. In the part of social concerns, gender equality is included, i.e. the concept of equal opportunities for men and women, which unfortunately as an issue still provides concerns. Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola fully supports stimulates and applies the concept of equality not only within its regular business but also in all external relations and social activities it assumes.

-Do you think that Stopanska banka Bitola may stand out in the promotion of gender equality in general as well as from the perspective of top management?

Natasha Nestorovska, PhD: As we noted before, we position the foundations related to issues concerning the society among us as institution. Gender equality has always been part of the Bank priorities not only declaratively but also in practice. The rights, responsibilities and opportunities in the Bank has never been and will never be distributed by gender. This way of functioning by surmounting all barriers related to gender equality and balance of the percentage of representation of men and women goes through the entire organizational structure of Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola including the top management of the Bank of which we are part.

-According to you, which are the biggest advantages for a company, having more women in its top management?

Gordana Baltovska, MA: So far experience in work showed that woman managers demonstrated as quite good organizers.  They are skilled in setting up priorities, multitasking and solve daily work problems fast, show high level of cooperation and excellently handle mentorship. In Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola, in addition to the women in the Management Board, numerous women execute managing functions on sectoral level. Of a total of eleven sectors in the Bank, seven are managed by women, who demonstrate maximum responsibility and dedication in managing the activities in their scope of works thus contributing to efficient operations of the Bank. Yet good results are reflection of mutual commitments of all managers and employees in the Bank.

-Banking sector characterizes by traditionally high level of representation of women, and in some banks women are dominant in the top management. In your opinion, what is the reason for that?

Natasha Nestorovska, Phd: The time we live in today is quite different from the previous twenty years. The woman’s role does not only involve care for the household and family. Women today already have different attitudes and affinities. The number of women who assume education and work has increased, and they invest in personal and professional expansion, and as a result they are prosperous in the business. All this contributes to increased representation of women in all business spheres. In the banking sector, great number of women are engaged in sales, risk management, support and finance, processing and IT sector. Occupations are not divided in male and female any more. Women become increasingly competent in performing tasks, which in the past were generally performed by men.  This is also the case with managing functions in banks where higher educated women having long-term experience, communication and organization skills, demonstrated that they are professional in their area.

-How do you personally manage to make balance among business, personal life and social efficiency?

Gordana Baltovska,MA: All in all it comes down to good organization. Although success requires dedication and hard work, after all not any success is complete unless we leave time for other activities that make our day. It is necessary to plan your time well and use it rationally in order to realize planned activities, irrelevant if work tasks, leisure, or time to spend with your family or friends is in question.   If you stick to your schedule and make maximum efforts in your activities, then you will accomplish anything important to you. Moreover, statistics indicate that the time people spend on social networks is increasing. In the era of information flow, it is surely important to be informed; however, one has to demonstrate efficiency in the choice of useful information in a short time.

-What characterizes you as a part of top management, i.e. what are the key values you would like to transfer to your associates and all employees in the Bank?

Natasha Nestorovska, PhD: Key values that we would like to transmit have already been steadily established within the corporate culture. We work with accountable, reliable, devoted and skilled persons, who perform their tasks with maximum professionalism and ethic while fostering team spirit. In this way all together contribute that Stopanska banka a.d. Bitola is a synonym of a trustworthy bank for our clients and business associates, a bank that enlarges the Shareholders’ capital and a bank that is a desirable and attractive employer.