What have you done before you have startet at BYK-Chemie?
After the Abitur (12 or 13-year diploma) in 1997 in Wesel, I initially did a banking apprenticeship with Volksbank Rhein-Lippe. I subsequently successfully completed a banking specialist long-distance continuing education study program with an emphasis in corporate banking. Then I studied European Business at the University of Portsmouth (GB) and at the Münster University of Applied Sciences (D). I did my thesis work at BYK-Chemie in Wesel and graduated in 2006 with a double degree: BA (Honors) European Business (GB) and Business Administration [Diplom-Betriebswirt] (D).
I had several internships during my apprenticeship and my university education: in Dublin at the Bank of Ireland, in Santiago de Chile at the automotive group Indumotora Automotriz, as well as in Frankfurt and Hong Kong at the consulting firm Brunswick Group LLP.
In addition to your profession, you are also triathlete. How do you manage to balance work and sport activities?
ALTANA is demanding of its employees, but at the same time also gives a high degree of flexibility in the job structure by way of flextime and lifetime working-hours accounts. This benefits the employer and the employee. First, a person is able to cushion the spikes in the work load through extra work, and second, through the flextime can also accommodate personal appointments and thus can easily coordinate work and private life. BYK also promotes employee health. For example, fitness and classes in relaxation techniques are offered. I personally utilize the reduced-priced massages and swimming options.
How would you rate ALTANA as an employer? What do you like in particular?
As an international specialty chemical group, ALTANA is the market leader in its market areas and a very financially sound company. It therefore also offers job security. How we mastered the 2010 crisis year was indeed admirable.
ALTANA is focused on innovation and sustainable value creation. The company welcomes and promotes active participation in making changes and improvements – the employee suggestion system is one such example. The company offers profit sharing for union and non-union employees, and also supports the pension plan.
I also like that the fact ALTANA has a sense of responsibility toward people and the environment. We have high environmental and safety standards and continue to implement accident prevention measures.
I am proud to be a part of the ALTANA Group. And the low employee turnover in the Group is proof that I am not the only one who feels very connected to the company.
What distinguishes the personnel development at ALTANA?
ALTANA promotes personal and professional development of committed and motivated employees to a special degree. There is a comprehensive continuing education portfolio with a wide range of options.
The ALTANA development programs, such as the one by the same name that I have gone through, prepare the company employees intensively for further tasks. Completing the program is not a career guarantee, but the chances are high for new tasks and challenges.
What are your professional goals?
BYK as a subsidiary of ALTANA gave me an excellent opportunity to join the company as a sales controller. Since then, I have been able to continually further develop myself in my position and take on more responsibility through project work. At the moment, I am managing the CRM@BYK project with the objective of globally optimizing our customer relations management. The project is ongoing until 2012.
After that I am I looking forward to other interesting challenges and projects. I am not yet able to foresee what the future could hold for me in one to two years. Since my apprenticeship and work experience has been more general in nature, I have the opportunity to develop myself in various directions in the Group. But I am sure that after CRM@BYK there will once again be opportunities for me to take on interesting and challenging tasks. In this regard, I see my focus being in the sales-related area and with international colleagues. I look forward to making a difference in the company and helping chart our future together.