Wargha Enayati, A Ceo in Service to Others
The “Building” Episode
His grandfather, of Persian origin, was a well known merchant in Teheran where he sold wool and silk brought from China, which he then exported all over Europe. His father, a doctor, had a significant influence on young Wargha. After the Second World War, Wargha`s father, Enayatollah Enayati was among the first to establish himself in a ruined Germany, with two determined goals: to finish his studies and to share the Bahá’i teachings.
Somehow, history repeats itself, remembers Wargha. He himself had left Germany behind in 1983 and came to study in Romania, encouraged by the fact that Queen Mary was the first member of royalty to embrace the message of Bahá’u’lláh, the founder of Bahá’í faith. As a young medical student, first at Suceava, then at Cluj, he imagined he would stay there no longer than a year. He believed that as soon as he was graduated from the student exchange program, he would return to Germany. 27 years have passed since then, and he is still here.
“Einheit in Der Vielfalt”/Unity in Diversity
Because he was born and raised in Germany, the language in which he thinks is German, but he knows Persian culture and has Persian habits. Diplomacy is one of them. He has an innate, impulsive temper that he had to learn to control. In this respect, he is very much like his (“influential”? “determined”? “forceful”? – ) grandfather. That’s why his mother frequently had to tell him: “Look at your grandfather, he loses even when he’s right, because his manner of expressing himself is so aggressive…”
Even now, as an adult, when he needs a counselor, other than his wife, he turns to his parents. For example, for the medical services deal he crafted, he had fretted for months, searching for the best investor. The investors who wanted to become CMU shareholders exerted extraordinary pressure on him. Although he knows how to make a decision, in this case, he simply couldn’t make up his mind. He had to call his father and they made the decision together.
After 26 years of living in Romania, Enayati is so Romanian that when he goes to Germany, some people tell him how Romanian his habits are. Especially when it comes to driving.
“Ich und Die Anderen”
Enayati knows that he has to listen to people first, no matter the hierarchy. So he listens. To each of his co-workers and employees, risking the possibility of being mistaken for a fool. He believes that a leader’s role is to synthesize with others’ points of view and to discern, as much as possible, the essential. He knows people are used to listening only to those in a position of power and to flatter their boss. But Wargha is convinced that, at CMU, he is not surrounded by yes-men. His people defend their opinions quite fiercely. To this, he has no objections whatsoever.
Unirea Medical Center had a 37% income increase in Q1 of 2010, reaching 4,713 million euro, compared to the similar period the previous year, when the income was 3.424 million euro.
Inspired by the idea of a medical office for Shell’s employees, in 1994, he began to sell medical services by subscription. The idea worked and he now believes that his success is based on that pioneering act. He prides himself on the fact that his medical subscriptions were a serious alternative to the existing health medical insurances.
Don’t think everything worked without a hitch from the start. He had a long way to walk until he was taken serious by investors till he had the financial resources to develop the business. He had to face all sorts of obstacles, including those coming from competitors who brought a lot of money from abroad and wanted to conquer the market. He had to stand up to as well against a few unfair competitors who tried to discredit his business.
When a scandal broke regarding a child’s death during medical proceedings in one of his clinics, Wargha was away in Germany. When he came back, he tried to dig for the truth himself in the multiplicity of overwhelming contradictory information. Although an official investigation is still under way, Wargha defends his Romanian doctors and says that the parents deliberately concealed evidence regarding their child’s illness and that an intervention of the same type had been refused by Austrian doctors. Unfortunately, only two years had passed since the first scandal broke, when an employee of E&Y died shortly after she had been seen by a doctor from CMU. Although Enayati`s name was not even mentioned in both cases, he was and still is very upset.
The financial press speculates that the amount of the transaction was over 40 million euro. However, Wargha Enayati kept 20% of CMU shares.
Enayati started his business with modest expectations and proved that one can succeed by determination. Until two years ago, the profit he made was equal to that made by a 25 year old who bought a 10.000 m2 land and sold it back for a double price the next year. “He was making as much as we, 500 people, were making, working hard day and night. Business was done in a gambling style in Romania, but I didn’t fall for that”.
Unirea Medical Center was established by Doctor Wargha Enayati and his wife, Mitra Tai. In February, Advent International investment fund purchased 80% of the shares from Enayati and from the 3i investment fund. The Competition Council authorized the takeover early in May. Avamedica, Sunrise Medical Clinic, Motilor Medical Center, Medical Investigation Center and Stem-Health Unirea were taken over on this occasion.“I intend to invest in CMU in the future, for its healthy development. If you invest, benefits will certainly come”, declares the businessman.
In February, Wargha Enayati (Special Award – Entrepreneurship) received The General manager of 2009 award from the Romanian Human Resources Association, The HR Club.