MPS CEO Nicola Thibaudeau: "I'm a good boss!"  MPS CEO Nicola Thibaudeau: "I'm a good boss!"  MPS CEO Nicola Thibaudeau: "I'm a good boss!"
She is one of the best-known businesswomen in French-speaking Switzerland and is at the forefront of Swiss innovation. Nicola Thibaudeau has been called a true force of nature and is certainly not your typical executive. Born in Canada, she grew up with ten siblings and always had big dreams – many of which have become reality, for example getting a pilot license or climbing some of the highest mountains. As CEO of the successful micromechanical company MPS, she keeps growing the business. In this week's Executive Talk, she tells our editor-in-chief Urs Gredig how she motivates her employees and why she does not like the idea of quotas for women.
Urs Gredig
“We have a bigger mission with GetYourGuide,” says co-founder Rein
The travel platform GetYourGuide made headlines in May when the Swiss tech unicorn raised CHF 500 million in its latest investor round. But co-founder Tobias Rein says that it is customer value, not money, that drives him. “So many travel experiences still suck,” he says, “and I still believe if we focus on the things we want to do, we can be number one in the world.”
Urs Gredig
Vontobel CEO: “You have to have a controlled amount of paranoia”
Zeno Staub has been Vontobel’s CEO since 2011 and has experienced the transformation of the Swiss banking system firsthand. Find out in this week’s Executive Talk why he thinks the market has entered a new era and why “Swissness” alone isn’t enough for banks here to survive in the future.
Urs Gredig
Celebrity chef Anton Mosimann: “We lose customers because of Brexit”
Swiss-born Michelin-starred chef Anton Mosimann moved to London over 40 years ago and has been cooking for his customers—including the British royal family—ever since. He always follows two simple rules: show respect for your staff and enjoy what you do.
Urs Gredig
Banker Patrick Odier: Stress is the enemy of our business
For more than 220 years, the family of Patrick Odier has been a pillar of Geneva-based private bank Lombard Odier. Having dealt with more than 40 financial crises, the company—and its managing partners—know that thinking long-term is the key to success. And that now includes sustainable finance.
Urs Gredig
Jos Dijsselhof: The EU doesn’t understand how Switzerland works
SIX is in full transformation mode under the helm of CEO Jos Dijsselhof. He sheds light on the overhaul process: “The hardware is there, but the real impact still has to come.” He also says that the reason the Swiss-EU framework agreement has been unsuccessful thus far is because the EU doesn’t fully understand how Switzerland works.
Urs Gredig
Dieter Meier: “There’s a fine line between passion and addiction”
Dieter Meier calls himself a “lazy guy,” but his wide-spanning career seems anything but. After founding the band Yello, Meier headed to Argentina to raise cattle and produce wines for his successful restaurants. Meier even played professional poker, an experience that taught him about taking risks. He tells Urs Gredig all about his latest gamble: taking on the chocolate industry.
Urs Gredig
Jean-Claude Biver: “My ego has been satisfied for quite some time”
There’s arguably not another watch executive as legendary—and disruptive—as Jean-Claude Biver. The Luxembourg-born visionary has been on the cutting edge of the industry for almost five decades. What makes this maverick tick and why does he believe in love as a pivotal management strategy?
Urs Gredig
André Kudelski: A disruptive mind in an ever-changing business world
As CEO and chairman, André Kudelski has headed up his technology company for 30 years. In that time, he’s had to transform and disrupt his business model several times. How does he manage change, where does he see Switzerland in a global perspective, and how can the Kudelski Group maintain its status as a world leader in digital security?
Urs Gredig
Economiesuisse director: “It’s liberating to be able to speak out”
Monika Rühl is a trained diplomat with a successful career in the Swiss federal administration. Now, as head of the business association Economiesuisse, she finds herself as a spokesperson in the midst of all the big discussions—and she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Urs Gredig
Thomas Borer: “I don’t feel offended if someone calls me a lobbyist”
As former Swiss ambassador to Germany and head of the 1990s’ task force “Switzerland—Second World War,” Thomas Borer is used to dealing with difficult situations. Now a strategic consultant, Borer has some compelling ideas about how Switzerland should deal with the European Union.
Urs Gredig
Two-time advertiser of the year: “I’m not a good lazy person”
Regula Bührer Fecker has been named as one of the 100 most important business figures in Switzerland as well as one of the 100 most successful Swiss under 40. Find out how the advertising executive stays creative and why she thinks young businesswomen lack good role models.
Urs Gredig
Rivella CEO: “I’m not a guy who wants to control everything”
Erland Brügger has led the most iconic Swiss drinks company for over 10 years. The marketing expert talks about being CEO of a family-owned business, the difficulty of promoting Rivella abroad, and why hard talks with his father helped him become a better executive.
Urs Gredig
Carl Elsener of Victorinox: “We think in generations, not in quarters”
The man behind the famous Swiss army knife is known as one of the most socially conscious entrepreneurs in Switzerland. For Carl Elsener, respect for his employees, his customers, and the over 130-year-old family tradition is at the core of everything Victorinox does.
Urs Gredig
Nestlé chairman Paul Bulcke on criticism: “High trees catch more wind”
This year marks Paul Bulcke’s 40th anniversary at Nestlé. The former CEO and current chairman of the world’s biggest food and beverage company speaks about his leadership values, how he faces criticism, and why working in many different countries has helped him to stay grounded, an asset since, according to him, “egos are not good” in corporate life.

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