We are increasingly projected into the future, but sometimes it’s good to look at the past to give the right recognition to those who created the conditions for a long entrepreneurial success. Fausta Grassi, daughter of the founder of Ocrim, Guido Grassi, was a key figure in the company’s l innovation management process. Her moral and social stature have deeply affected the way she does business.

An Innovative Entrepreneurial Style

Who knows how many other business strategies she would have developed if she had had more time. Fausta Grassi in just four years as President was able to give Ocrim an international identity and a cutting-edge management style. She led the company into the future, transforming an organization centred on its founder into a less vertical structure, delegating autonomy to world-class managers.

After the death of her father, Guido Grassi, in 1983, she was appointed President and CEO of Ocrim in 1984, facing this onerous role with an unexpected determination in such a tiny and shy woman. Her degree in biological sciences and a first work experience in the hospital seemed to start her taking a completely different path, but they didn’t prevent her from performing, for a long period, her duties as CEO in Ocrim. She gained a deep knowledge of the milling market and absorbed the entrepreneurial spirit of her father with whom she shared an extraordinary affinity for intuitive skills, dedication to work and social sensitivity.

She had awards, public offices and great satisfaction. In just two years she managed to double the turnover. Everyone remembers the joy and emotion with which she participated in the inauguration of the new, ultra-modern milling plant installed in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Indonesia. Everyone remembers the happiness with which she received the “Marco Polo” award from the hands of the then Prime Minister Bettino Craxi, intended for companies particularly worthy for export activities.

She was inexhaustible; she had a full vision of life that she interpreted with great enthusiasm and participation. She engaged full time in the company, but at the same time she knew how to find time for doing charitable works and, of course, for her family. In 1961 she married the doctor Attilio Calza, then president of the Order of Cremona; she had two children, Guido and Aldo and always maintained a very close relationship with the three sisters. Those who have had the honour of knowing her and working alongside her are pleased to remember her open and generous smile, her brilliant conversation, her spirit of sacrifice and resourcefulness. It was a terrible blow for everyone to hear, on that sad morning of January 29, 1987, of the tragic accident in which she died at the age of 51. But her memory is more alive than ever.

(In the photo: GLA lunch 1986: the Ocrim winners, the President Fausta Grassi, the honorary President Aldina Grassi)