Norbert Wicki is Founder & President of WETEC Consulting, which provides financial services to European clients looking to optimize their business endeavors in the Middle East. Wicki’s firm specializes in project management and financing.
A serial entrepreneur and an internationally-established finance consultant, Norbert Wicki has over three decades of multi-industry experience under his belt. Before moving to Dubai, where he started WETEC, Wicki lived in Azerbaijan. Here, he founded the Representative office of Private Asset Partners Switzerland AG’s branch in Baku.
Never one to turn down an opportunity, Norbert Wicki also founded and managed two other companies at the same time. These included Agrocore Finance AG, a financial consulting firm centered around advising clients in commodity and trade finance matters, and Wicki Consulting, where Wicki dedicated himself to advising private and corporate clients on how to structure tailor-made financial products to meet their needs.
Before leading these companies, Norbert Wicki served as President of the Board of Directors for the Centrex Group in Switzerland, an internationally-recognized corporation known for its far-reaching work in the energy sector. His most notable achievements included overseeing gas trading ventures in Central Asia and guiding investment projects across Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Azerbaijan.
Wicki started his career working in portfolio management, a career choice that inspired him to move into the private banking sector, which led him into project management and financing. During this time, he held various leadership positions at several highly-regarded Swiss institutions, including UBS, Dresdner Bank, and BNP Paribas.
Norbert Wicki holds a matura in economics and a master’s degree in jurisprudence from the University of Zurich and Bern, as well as a certification as a Chartered Financial Analyst.
Outside of his professional endeavors, Norbert Wicki is an avid tennis player and animal lover. He also has a passion for winemaking and tasting that dates back to his childhood when he would accompany his father on wine-centered excursions. Today, he enjoys reading about wine, visiting craft seminars, and planning wine-centered holidays.
Our Interview with Norbert Wicki
Question: Name the most impactful lesson you learned from failure.
Norbert Wicki: Friendship and work don’t always mix. We spend most of our day in the workplace, so developing relationships with your colleagues is going to happen. And it’s okay to form friendly connections with other people in the office, but at the end of the day, business should be business and friendship should be friendship. If you intertwine them too much, you’ll find yourself disappointed by a friend who was never really a friend, just a charismatic business connection.
Question: What did you waste the most time on when you were first starting your career?
Norbert Wicki: As an entrepreneur, it’s tempting to want to do everything yourself. That way, if you’re successful, you know that you succeeded of your own volition. I was guilty of this when I was first starting out, but quickly realized how important it is to have the support of a robust network. Don’t waste your time doing every single task yourself. Learn how to invite others in not only for day-to-day support, but for encouragement as well.
Question: Name a tool you use for work that you can’t live without.
Norbert Wicki: I use a lot of tools throughout the day, but I believe that my offline resources are the most effective ways at keeping me productive. I rely heavily on my network of professional connections to inspire and motivate me to excel.
Question: What excites you the most about your industry right now?
Norbert Wicki: I live in Dubai, so there is incredible potential for growth in the MENA region’s financial sector. Within the next few decades, I believe that this area will set itself apart as a leading global hub.
Question: Name one small habit that positively impacts your productivity.
Norbert Wicki: Maintaining focus at all costs. No matter what I take on, whether it’s starting a new project or nearing the completion of a process, I approach everything with flexibility, precision, and a steadfastness in my efforts. For me, this is how I maintain productivity throughout the year.
Question: What tips do you have for getting a seat at the table?
Norbert Wicki: Follow whatever you are passionate about. I believe this is how you get a seat at the table. If you take on a job or career that you dislike, you’ll be sitting at the wrong table. There is no secret to success, I really believe that you get to where you want to be by pursuing what you believe in.
Question: What book has made the biggest impact on your life?
Norbert Wicki: Victor E. Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning.”
Question: Do you value intelligence or common sense more? Why?
Norbert Wicki: If I had to choose, probably common sense. Intelligence can only get you so far. I know people who excelled in school, yet their lack of common sense hindered their growth more than anything else. And besides, you can’t teach common sense in school.
Question: What would you consider to be the perfect day?
Norbert Wicki: Aside from spending time with family and friends, I also love spending time around animals. I have a monthly budget I set aside for feeding the stray cats and dogs around my area. It’s so important to me that they are taken care of.