We had the wonderful lights of Christmas, and we were waiting for the New Year in festive mood: we had holidays!
On the border of past and future, at the beginning of the New Year, the tranquillity of holidays gave us the opportunity to look back on the year behind us and to review what we could achieve from the goals of a year ago.
We can state that we did a rich, value-creating and successful work! When searching for the definition of success, we can approach it from several sides. There are different levels of success, success has a temporal aspect, and behind success there is always a person, the creative man.
When I talk about success, I start out from the Manufactory’s quality policy, which means that there is always to achieve a better and higher quality status than the current one. Therefore, success is only for a moment, and tomorrow it may seem self-evident to reach today’s success! But that is not so, we must fight for every result!
Success also has a temporal aspect. It is not a question that Herend lived, lives and will live forever. This is especially true when the Manufactory is approaching its bicentenary anniversary. In our almost 200-year history, today’s people “only” have the task to leave behind more to our posterity through today’s successes than we got from our predecessors.
Success is also dependent on people, as successes cannot be achieved alone, and it is not good to experience them alone.
As regards of the most important pillar of our operation, the successful operation as business community, we can state that the Herend Porcelain Manufactory was profitable again in 2017, we increased our sales in Hungary, we made remarkable investments, the economic and financial operation of the Manufactory was stable. The indicators of our success were excellent quality, the uniqueness of our porcelains, our product development and innovation activity and our openness to the world. Our thinking is ahead of our competitors, we know how to combine the traditions of centuries and the 21st century world driven by operating systems.
We also fulfilled our cultural mission. We are committed to preserve Hungarian art values, and pass them on to later generations. Last year we had several cultural exhibitions again: beside its permanent exhibition we organized three temporary exhibitions at the Herend Porcelain Museum and four Herend Porcelain exhibitions in Hungary. We had six art exhibitions outside Hungary, in Riga, Latvia, in Ostrava, Czech Republic, at the Hofburg in Vienna, in Tőketerebes (Trebišov), Slovakia, in Gyergyószentmiklós (Gheorgheni), Romania and in Osaka, Japan. We made a significant contribution to Hungary’s positive image building!
Herend Porcelain Manufactory is not only a successful business organization and a value-creating community with social responsibility but also a social community based on the pillar of solidarity. Comparing to the previous years, last year we were able to step forward in this field as well. In 2017, we performed a wage increase of near 15%, and since 2011 there was a wage increase of 44% at the Manufactory. We introduced a Herend minimum wage, which is over the 2018 national minimum wage and the guaranteed minimum wage, and last year we were able pay 300 million forints more wage to our employees than targeted by the business plan. The benefits per head increased, in 2017 we were able to provide our near 750 employees, our suppliers and through them their families with income and existence.
One of the biggest expectations of the Company in 2018 will be the opening of the Herend Porcelain Palace in downtown Budapest proclaiming that Herend is the world’s largest porcelain manufactory of today.
On the border of past and future, in the first days of the year we plan for the future, and plan the tasks to be solved. We place our short-term goals under our long-term goals, and we put the individual in the interest of the Community’s future. However, we also know that if we always think about the past and plan for the future, the present will get lost!
I wish that we have again in 2018 wisdom and strength to solve problems, human mind to think for daily work, motivation inspired by the work community day by day, courage to overcome dangers, luck sometimes and ability to love and to stay humans. My motto for 2018: trust, patience and respect. It is important to be able to smile, as the proverb says: the smile you send will return to you.
I would like to thank all of our customers, trade and other cooperating partners, suppliers and service providers for trusting us; thank you all for the lots of love that the Herend Community received again last year!
Finally, I would like to wish you in the name of the directors and the entire creative community of the Herend Porcelain Manufactory all the best, strength, health, happiness, optimism and success for 2018!
Respectful greetings from Herend in January 2018,
Dr Attila Simon