Hayk Karapetyan: I intend not to tolerate mediocre results at work

03.02.2021 | 00:10 Home / News / Interviews /
We hosted the CEO of “Haypost” CJSC Hayk Karapetyan in the course of the interview series No-Tie Meetings.

- You worked in Russia for many years, holding responsible positions in the telecommunications industry. How did you come to the decision to return to your motherland?

In fact, this is my third return. The first one was back in 2007. I fell in love; my then-girlfriend, who is my wife now, lived in Armenia. So I left Russia and moved to Armenia. This coincided with the inauguration of the official representative office of Qiwi Company in Armenia, and the Head of Yerevan Municipality representation in Moscow Makar Nahapetyan offered me to manage it. As Armenia had always been in my mind, I agreed immediately. We spent more than two years here. Later, in 2010, we got married and moved to Moscow, where my parents live.

- How did you meet your wife?

- I used to organize cultural events for the Armenian community of Moscow when I was a student. One of those events was the concert of Mush Dance Studio. My future wife was a dancer in this Studio. This is how it all started. We were too young then and got married only four years later.  

Hayk Karapetyan with his wife

- Could you tell us a little bit about your years as a student? I know that you graduated from one of the best technical universities, Bauman Moscow State Technical University.

- It is quite difficult to study at Bauman University. Especially during the first three years I could take practically no time off at all. I graduated from one of the best faculties, qualified as Engineer of Informatics and Management Systems.

Hayk Karapetyan as a student

I started working in my third year at university, I worked as a delivery man, web designer, producer. Back then I realized that I was rather an organizer by nature than an engineer, although the knowledge I acquired at Bauman University helps me to this date find systemized solutions to technical issues.

Hayk Karapetyan as a student

- You started working at an early age. There are several high-ranking business organizations in your CV, would you tell us about them?

- After having managed the representative office of Qiwi in Armenia, I was invited to Viva-Cell MTS, where I spent two years as Senior Coordinator of Delivery Channels. In 2010 my wife and I moved again to Moscow, where I got an employment at MEGAFON Company, creating innovative financial products that are still widely used in the Russian market. I also worked as Commercial Director of Beeline, leading a team of more than 100 people. This is where I learnt what it means to be a leader, serve as an example and motivate people.  

- If you don’t mind, let’s talk about “Haypost”. The Company was under trust management from 2006, there was even a decision in 2015 about its full privatization. However, the position of the Government changed in 2015, and it decided to amend the situation at “Haypost” by means of a state-designated manager. How did you become the one who was entrusted for this mission?

- It was pretty unexpected. The Government published an announcement: all those interested in the management process could send an application and their CV to the corresponding email. I sent my CV without entertaining any particular expectations and just forgot about it. Two months later, in January 2019, I was invited by the Government to an interview. Only 5 applications were selected from 2000; I felt very honored and responsible.

Hayk Karapetyan

The interview was a success; I was invited in two weeks to meet the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. I didn’t get a specific offer that day; however, one year later, when I was working as Product Manager at Round Bank, Moscow, I was contacted again by the Armenian Government and invited to take part in the tender for the position of the CEO of “Haypost”.   

- Your new job at “Haypost” coincided with the outbreak of the pandemic.

- I was really “lucky”. I assumed the new job in April 2020 when the situation with the pandemic was quite tense in our country. Public transport did not function; businesses were run remotely. Unlike other organizations, “Haypost” was directly assigned to go to the workplace, collect payments of utility bills, deliver allowances and pensions at the people’s residences. Anti-crisis management became a priority for “Haypost”. My key task was to ensure the faultless operation of postal communication, protecting at the same time employees and clients from the pandemic. The task was complicated but we resolved it thanks to an uninterrupted and systemized 24/7 work.   

Moreover, the pandemic did not prevent us from preparing the draft development strategy of “Haypost”, which has been already approved by the Armenian Government.  “Haypost” is expected to become a national postal operator with an efficient management and profit-making business model; there is a lot to do.  

-  Did your family move to Yerevan together with you? Was this an easy decision, have they adapted to Armenia?

- I came alone in March 2020. My children were still going to school and nursery in Moscow, so they could join me only in August. Frankly speaking, I missed them a lot.

My elder son is back now in the same class group where he used to study. My daughter started her first grade at school in September, and my younger son is 4 years old, he goes to nursery. All of them are fluent in Armenian as we have always spoken Armenian at home. My kids love Armenia; they are in their element here. They kept actively in touch with their Armenia-based friends from Moscow too.  

Hayk Karapetyan with his wife and children

My family gives me very much energy. No matter how tired one is after work: the communication with the family, with kids makes everything alright.

- Do you miss your previous jobs? Which one was closer to you heart?

- I don’t miss the jobs but the people; a company means much to one thanks to its people. At “Haypost” too I tried to build a team to go a long way with.  

Hayk Karapetyan

The management books say you should know the people on a bus you’re travelling with, you need to find out who the driver is, then who should occupy each seat. This was my primary task; now my team is 99 % ready. I am proud to see that almost everybody has joined our team coming from different successful companies to share the future success of “Haypost”.  

- What kind of manager do you consider yourself?

- I intend not to tolerate mediocre results at work, I always try to get the maximum and this is how I motivate my team. I learnt this approach from my boss at MEGAFON. At the same time, I am sure that especially a manager of a large company should be available to his employees and have a capacity of listening. Any of the 3000 employees at “Haypost” can send me an email and pass me on their concerns.

Hayk Karapetyan

We have completely open, close relationships. We know what problems our employees are faced with; we have put an end to the fear of expressing opinions.

- How did you organize the operation of “Haypost” during the war?

- “Haypost” was actively involved in the logistic processes from the very first day of the war. A huge amount of aids was gathered in the USA, Russia, Europe. It was necessary to make sure that they reach their destination. Doing its best with an extraordinary effort, “Haypost” managed to ship the vast majority of the items to Armenia. Besides, a significant part of the aid collected within Armenia was delivered to the Ministry of Defense via “Haypost” too. Another equally complicated and hard task was the delivery of pensions and state allowances to the people of Artsakh who took shelter in Armenia. Actually a large-scale work has been carried out.  

- What modifications did you make and which ones are expected?

- All the postmen in Yerevan city pay the pensions through an electronic system via tablets. Even the eldest one, an 84-year-old postman, learnt how to use the tablet.  

An incentive system for employees is introduced throughout Armenia; the remuneration of 1300 employees was increased by about 25%.

We signed a strategic agreement with Russian Post, which creates really unprecedented opportunities in the electronic trade turnover between our countries.

We will soon launch the e-wallet of “Haypost”. We reopened the office of “Haypost” in the USA, we are going to have another office in China soon. An important part of the strategy is the new project of the “Haypost” head office.

Hayk Karapetyan

Quite significant reforms are planned in the customer service field. We are going to have broadband internet; at the moment, only 200 of our 850 post offices have it.   

We have also launched other services under the motto “In the village as in town”. We started the delivery of ordered medicines all over Armenia: now it is possible to order medicines both from Armenia and from abroad in even the most remote villages.     

We are going to make “Haypost” a financially stable and investment-attractive enterprise with the right business model, preserving and eventually increasing the number of jobs.

Interview by Amali Khachatryan
Pictures from Gayane Yenokyan’s and Hayk Karapetyan’s personal collection
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