It’s hard to imagine what else there is left for serial entrepreneur Fito Salume to achieve. As the chairman and CEO of Grupo Prologix, Salume is the owner of 50 successful and diverse companies that produce everything from wheat and flour to the latest healthcare and finance technologies. The group also includes one of the top professional soccer teams in El Salvador. When he’s not busy overseeing his companies that employ 10,000 people worldwide, the dedicated family man and father of six children somehow finds the time to promote the six charities he founded, dedicated to helping families of low incomes.
As you can probably gather, running a successful business is much more than just numbers for Fito, who believes that companies that are properly managed provide a greater opportunity to make a positive impact in other people’s lives.
“I love what I do, and primarily, it’s because it gives me the opportunity to give something back to society,” explained Fito. “Employing people and helping at every opportunity is tremendously rewarding. I believe in creating a workplace culture of respect and reward where everyone is free to fulfill their potential.”
Such long-term thinking is typical of the man whose motto is, “Failure is not an option,” and who has an enviable reputation as a turnaround specialist. Fito is a firm believer that he has succeeded in so many varied businesses because he never forgets his golden rule – “always treat everyone the same way you would like to be treated.”
“Along with the golden rule, there are common fundamental themes that define success for any organization,” explained Fito. “Always put your customers first, provide value for money, stick to clear objectives, always look for ways to improve, and never quit.”
It’s a simple philosophy, and one which has helped Fito weather the many economic storms that any successful business must navigate.
Fito said, “I’m always careful to ensure my businesses are run successfully, and while at the same time being socially responsible. I wouldn’t be able to concentrate on my other passion, which involves impacting lives, and creating opportunity if that were not the case.”
Fito Salume has always had a great passion for professional sports, especially soccer. Through his charity foundation Fundacion Vive Futbol, he promotes moral values in youth that include teamwork, responsibility, and respect for others by practicing the sport of soccer amongst children from families of low-income backgrounds.
As the President of Alianza F.C, the #1 Salvadorian professional soccer team, he encourages his players and coaches to do social work that provide the opportunity to low income families, kids from orphanages, and those with disabilities to experience a motivational day with their idols.
Another of Fito’s passions is education. He not only is the Dean of a liberal arts and business bilingual college in El Salvador, but he also heads an education focused foundation Fundaeduca. The foundation’s godfathering program for public schools has been considered by the World Bank one of the best programs in the world for corporate social responsibility in education.
In the last 20 years, Fundaeduca has helped over one million kids in preparing for a better life. “To me, to have the opportunity to have a positive impact in the lives of so many children is a true blessing. Simply priceless.”