Consumer Product Manager, Middle East Area.
Let's start with the basics. Tell us your name, role, how long you’ve been at BAT?
My name is Santiago Morales, currently Consumer Product Manager for Middle East Area.
With a university degree in Chemical Engineering, I joined BAT Spain around 30 years ago. Really never thought I would be exposed to such rich experience, working across different geographies and with diverse profiles. All of which helped me achieve many milestones and also develop personally & professionally.
Tell us a little bit about your job and how you got into this line of work?
My main objective is to support delivery of the Product elements of the End Market Strategy. This role is very consumer centric; whilst the technical skills are important, I would say that the understanding of our target consumers and their drivers of preference is vital to delivering Product & Brand objectives. Because of that, I guide Product development by focusing on “what” needs to happen, “when” and support Global/Regional functional experts on the delivery of the “how”. Being close to consumers is where I feel I can do my job best.
To get here has been a fantastic and continuous learning experience, from basics to applied product knowledge, to diverse business environments and good exposure to product-consumer research interaction.
What gets you most excited about your job?
I try to structure thinking and apply a logical approach to everyday challenges with Passion – the real engine which drives my contribution; needed to consistently deliver in an exciting and ever-changing business environment. I really enjoy strategic discussions, which drive change that lead to successful results.
What’s been your greatest career achievement?
Delivering the product strategy and innovations for one of our Global Drive Brands, supporting the International Brands Team and being involved in a lot of challenges and strategic discussions, which teach you to see success and failure as part of the innovation process. It is really satisfying when you see brainstorming ideas translated into successful deployment and contributing to Brand and Company growth. I am also proud of contributing to a changed mindset and approach to gaining the most out of product and consumer insights.