Doing 'good' business in Russia
Stanislav ‘Stan’ Grafski was one of the first graduates from Nottingham University Business School’s pioneering MBA in Corporate Social Responsibility in 2004. We caught up with him to find out how he is applying the skills and knowledge gained from his time at Nottingham back in his native Russia.
“I have always enjoyed new challenges, so when the opportunity to do something ground-breaking came along I didn’t hesitate. When I came to NUBS in 2003, CSR was a virtually unheard of phenomenon in Russia, but by the time I successfully completed the MBA, interest had grown tremendously both among businesses and government bodies.
“When I initially returned to Russia none of blue chip employers I contacted were prepared to hire me. I was literally the first Russian national with this type of qualification and I guess recruiters were reluctant to take the chance on something so new.
“Eventually, international PR and communications consultancy - Grayling - offered me a position as Director of Government Relations & Public Affairs. I also found that having a unique degree enabled me to join the CSR and sustainability panels for some authoritative national business-related NGOs helping me to establish expert status in this discipline.
“My original degree was in law and I was able to combine this with my knowledge in CSR and experience gained in government relations and public affairs through my own consultancy practice, Grafski Consulting. The focus of my company is on helping international businesses to enter and expand in the Russian market.
“As the largest country on earth with a wealth of untapped natural resources and a highly educated workforce, Russia offers incredible opportunities but equally there are plenty of challenges such as infrastructure, intellectual property rights, business transparency and government protectionism.
“The MBA in CSR gave me the knowledge, skills and confidence to navigate the complex Russian business landscape and although I haven’t been back to campus since graduating, staying connected with the Business School and the alumni network is important to me and I know that Nottingham continues to be a world leader in sustainability education.”
More about the Nottingham MBA
Posted on Wednesday 30th May 2018