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“Building Bench Strength” – giving power to the people

News 22 March 2023 Global

Norvic Shipping prides itself on the breadth and depth of experience of its senior team. In this series, we find out more about their careers, roles and interests.

Michael Fenger, COO and Global Head of Chartering, is responsible for ensuring Norvic’s global operations run smoothly – a huge task made easier by the strong team he has around him.

Having enjoyed an extensive career in maritime, what brought you to Norvic Shipping?

I knew from dealing with Norvic in previous roles that the company was one of the more ambitious and aggressive players in the market. It’s always more interesting to be part of an organization that is going places, so when the opportunity to join Norvic in March 2019 came up, I took it

What makes Norvic stand out from the competition in the dry bulk market?

In big organizations, it’s difficult to get things done as any decisions have to go through various people. However, Norvic is unique – we move quickly by empowering colleagues to take responsibility and act when something needs doing, despite being a growing organization with offices around the world.

Generally speaking, it’s easier for smaller companies with one or two offices to be flexible and act decisively. Norvic has maintained that philosophy while expanding because we have a flat structure where everyone talks to each other. When it comes to decision time, we act swiftly as the relevant people discuss the matter and reach an agreement without going through various channels or line managers.

From a client services perspective, our objective is to be as close as possible to the charterers to understand and deliver on their needs. We achieve this is by establishing a local presence in regions close to our customers, such as Rio in South America where we recently opened a representative office. This upholds our vision to be an international dry cargo organization that supports customers on the ground through our local networks and operations.

How do you track everything that’s happening across Norvic’s three business units?

Norvic never sleeps as we’re working in an industry that’s 24/7. In my position, things can get very busy, especially when dealing with several issues at the same time. But my life is made easier by the fantastic team around me. I’ll speak to the heads of the chartering and operations teams each day, who keep me up to speed on anything that’s happening in their business unit – be it the Atlantic, Middle East or the Pacific.

As well as talking to my team on the phone, I like to visit them at their offices throughout the year. It’s important to have that contact where we can discuss business issues, updates or challenges in person, and to get to know each other more by interacting face-to-face.

What is your biggest achievement so far at Norvic?

Making sure we have the right team in place is a big one; another is developing the strategy in line with our ambitious growth plans. But it’s important to stress that these are collaborative achievements involving many people across the organization and not just one person. We wouldn’t have been able to grow the Norvic brand and business without our dedicated and committed team around the world.