Starting the day bright and early, Jimmy Arberi’s day always begins with positivity. With a fighting spirit and clear vision, he stands out in a crowd of leaders. He has managed to turn his name into a brand of success in Switzerland. Having emigrated from Kosovo during the difficult years, he remembers the challenges and obstacles of the first days in a foreign country and the courageous mindset he had to adopt on the bad days, turning them into successful ones. Family is Jim’s keyword as well as his compass that makes him a stronger, better, and more capable person every day.
Jim as a successful name in business, when you look back, how has this experience been for you?
It was a lot of work experience with endless challenges, that required commitment and discipline.
What is your formula for success?
Maximum responsibility, seriousness, good morals, and always have clear goals.
How was the initial stage of your business, and how difficult was it to start again in a foreign country?
After graduating from the Faculty of Economics in Prishtina in 1990, the current situation forced us to take the road to leave Kosovo, moving to Switzerland, to a much more developed country and a city like Zurich. The beginning was horror – full of challenges. It was necessary to learn things one by one from the beginning, we felt lost. But this made us even stronger. The responsibility fell on me – I had left my family in Kosovo in that miserable situation where my whole family were fired from the Serbian regime. It was a big responsibility, but I pushed myself to work with no time to rest so that they have the best. It made me very happy and proud.
What differentiates you from others?
I always have clear goals, I’m always one step ahead and plan things early. My simplicity and my virtue that accompanies me. I have a strong work ethic and seriousness – I see life as a reality and not an illusion.
Can you tell us more about your role as a CEO, from how your day starts, work commitments to the important decisions you make?
I wake up around 8.00 h and I always begin my day with a positive mindset. I spend my morning playing sports. Around 10 am, I head to my office (if I don’t have appointments earlier) and I start the calls, the meetings and I visit my construction sites. I usually have lunch with my charming wife, Viki (if I do not have a Business Lunch) and dinner with my boys. There are days when I am very busy and stressed and things sometimes do not go as I wished, but that is the nature of the real estate world. I am very gentle in relation to my team. I am very tolerant. I observe when things are moving forward and spend my time focusing on finding solutions.
How much has the business world changed today since you started? How has it improved or worsened?
Today the world is faster. The world has become more scrupulous and business has as well. There is no room for feelings – in New York, they say “there is no free lunch anymore”. I do not see that as a positive, there is also a positive side to the rapid progression. Modern technology and organisation allow us to pursue a safer approach – we build more perfectly, better materials, more beautiful design etc.
How do you see Albanian business today? Do you have any advice for young entrepreneurs?
Albanians in Switzerland are a very good example and have had a very positive impact. 25 years ago it was not like that. But in general, we are a community that very quickly adapts, communicates and interacts with each other. The business market is full of Albanians, both in business and in key positions in large Swiss companies. It is amazing how they have managed to be successful in every prism of life. So the opportunities for Albanian youth are now much greater and more realistic. A Tip for Young People: See for yourself the far-reaching goals.
Do you have a personal motto that inspires you?
Man is always on the course of learning, improvement and development. The motto is that life is very beautiful and so is the world, you have to enjoy the positive things. More love and tolerance and do not hang out with toxic people.
How would you describe yourself?
A man full of humour and positivity!