3 questions for... Laurent Guillot

10/12/2020

Making the world a better home. What exactly does our purpose mean for the High-Performance Solutions (HPS) businesses? Laurent Guillot, Senior Vice-President, CEO of HPS, answers this question for us.

What does Making the world a better home mean for High-Performance Solutions (HPS)?

In Making the world a better home, we need to understand the word “home” in its broadest sense: it is where we feel good, where we are at home, where we feel confident; it is our house, but also our car, office, city, country and planet. Making the world a better home means improving life for all by making each place a more efficient, fairer, more harmonious and more sustainable living space.

We do this by designing materials and solutions that are increasingly efficient and sustainable, and which improve everyday life, while understanding our customers’ needs and applications, and innovating and co-developing products and solutions with them.

High-Performance Solutions (HPS) are crucial to Saint-Gobain’s achieving the aim of its purpose.

How does it meet the main challenges facing HPS businesses? 

At HPS, we are facing three main challenges that are aptly covered by our purpose.

The first is to continually improve our customer intimacy. Today, our customers ask us to improve their performance while reducing their environmental footprint. To define a purpose is to acquire an extremely solid framework allowing us to reaffirm our partner role alongside leaders who want to achieve their transformation both in terms of their performance and the environmental transition.

Saint-Gobain’s purpose also sets the heading for our shared future thereby giving the company meaning. In this way, it also contributes to our second challenge which is to achieve excellence while also allowing each of our employees to express their talent and to unite the teams behind a shared project and build their long-term loyalty so that we can tackle the challenges ahead together.

The third challenge for HPS is to speed up our growth into the future. The purpose informs our growth and investment priorities in sustainable growth sectors. That’s why we have to adopt a more selective approach and focus on HPS businesses that have very high potential, for example, health, 5G, EVs, etc.

How do you see the future of industry? 

Industry will, in the future, be close to its customers, more agile, digital and frugal.

It will be closer to its customers, and for that it needs to be more agile. On the one hand, because customer demands are tending towards greater personalization, and because we are heading towards shorter visibility, as the context is highly uncertain. Our production plant needs to be able to adapt rapidly to satisfy all demands. We will get there by making our product facilities more flexible and reducing our investment costs.

Agility goes hand-in-hand with empowerment and collaboration. To be agile, the organization must allow individuals more responsibility and the ability to take decisions autonomously, which presupposes targets and a vision of where we collectively want to get. This explains why we have a Saint-Gobain purpose and a vision for HPS and for each Region.

Our industry will of course be more digital, in terms of its production means and products, which must also be digital, connected, and offer additional services or be able to be integrated into other digital products.

Finally, our future industry must be frugal. Better use of resources – energy or raw material consumption – must accompany lower costs. This means that our means of production, products and solutions must be environmentally sustainable. It is how HPS will contribute to Saint-Gobain’s purpose: Making the world a better home.

Photo Credit: ©Jean Chiscano.