5 questions with... Andrey Novakov
Winston Churchill, young entrepreneurs and taking inspiration from past leaders.
Andrey Novakov | Photo credit: European Parliament audiovisual
1. How would you describe your political/leadership style in three words?
It isn't easy to describe my political style in only three words, sometimes, different situations require different skills. But my philosophy could be summarised as: being as close to the people as possible, small on small things and big on big things and being focused on young people and their needs.
2. Is there anything you have personally achieved or done that would surprise people?
I was pleased to have managed to accomplish an initiative that was very important to me, launching the European exchange programme for young entrepreneurs with an international dimension, called A.L.E.C.O. This aims to revive the European entrepreneurial spirit by allowing young Europeans to get the best experience from top world innovation destinations and to apply it in Europe.
3. What was the most inspirational and influential book you have read and why?
'The Churchill Factor: How one man made history' is a book I read recently and it gave me a great deal of food for thought. The challenges politicians of that time faced required incredibly complicated and courageous decisions. These can inspire us today, by not allowing their mistakes to be repeated and appreciating their achievements.
4. Which person that you have worked with has most inspired you in your career, and how?
In politics, I admire people with the courage to defend and express their views and yet are humble enough to carry out difficult reforms if needed, while remaining loyal to their principles and honest with their electorate. In this sense, a true leader that really inspired me and shaped my career path is our national party leader, Boyko Borissov. He is a politician that has significantly improved the situation in Bulgaria. He was brave enough to defend and work hard to make important reforms happen in my country and take Bulgaria onto the right track of European values.
5. What is the most humbling thing you have experienced in your career?
I remember meeting a WW2 veteran in city of Petrich, Bulgaria a few years ago. He gave me some simple and honest advice: "My generation suffered but achieved peace in times of violence. Yours can take it for granted". I find a lot of wisdom in his words. We really need to appreciate what we achieved through the European project.