Brankica Trajkovic: Everything is possible, we should never abandon our dreams
Brankica Trajkovic is the CFO at Grand Casino Beograd where she is responsible for designing, coordinating and controlling of the implementation of the company’s business plan from a financial perspective. In a short interview she told us about her job, the challenges she faces in the entertainment industry and what brings her inspiration to do her job effectively.
By Boris Slesar
You have been working as a CFO at Grand Casino Beograd for over 10 years. What are the particular challenges you face as the Head of Finance in the Entertainment Industry?
Working in the Entertainment industry is fun but can also be very challenging. Since the product you are selling is entertainment itself, one might ask: How can you measure quantity or quality of such a product? How do you define what is the production cost, since let’s say, bonus credits or drinks and gifts are part of it? How can you implement some strategies from other industries? It is essential to have the answers to these kinds of questions before a single book entry is made.
I had worked previously in the entertainment industry, but never in Games of Chance industry, where everything is about odds and chances. When I came aboard, the first thing to do was to understand the business, and then to transfer it into the books. I had to explain to myself and to understand that it is possible to finish a day with a negative revenue, which is not common in other industries.
Of course, once you grasp all the complexities of the financial side of the business, you need to pass it along and make sure that the whole Financial Department understands what it’s supposed to do and cooperate with the rest of the team in order to have everything making sense for company, auditors and authorities.
Finally, the fact that Grand Casino is also the first casino opened in Serbia, means that this is kind of a new territory for the responsible Ministry. That is why it is extremely important to be actively engaged in introducing the business to authorities, and contribute to shaping of the respective legal framework for Games of Chance.
Has it always been your dream to work in the world of Finance?
Growing up, all I wanted was to work on Wall Street on stock exchange. That dynamics looked captivating, and I wanted to be right in the middle of that action. Today, it is not all about the adrenaline rush. I like control, planning and problem solving. I also always loved math and crunching numbers, so working in Finance seems to encompass all of that, and provides the feeling of accomplishment and great professional satisfaction.
A Financial Director needs to be inspired in order to perform their job successfully. What is the source of inspiration for you personally?
Working as a CFO demands a lot of energy, and the stress that goes along can be overwhelming at times. One always needs a safe haven to go to at the end of the day, and for me, it is my family that is there to support me and provide all the positive energy to recharge my batteries.
They are the ones that inspire me and give me ample motivation to tackle all the challenges I might face. Aiming to reach perfection at everything I do, is also a source of great inspiration. Goals I set are very high, so sometimes I question myself if they are reachable at all, but when I recall some previous major accomplishments, it always makes me believe that nothing is impossible.
I always push myself over the limits, and very often I teach my kids, friends and colleagues that everything is possible and that we should never abandon our dreams