How long have you been working at ERICH JAEGER?
For almost 10 years.
How did you come to ERICH JAEGER, and what prompted you to start your career with us?
At that time I was looking for an internship for my practical semester, and it was actually something of a coincidence. I was in the hardware store, looking to buy plants for my parents' garden, when I saw the name ERICH JAEGER. I thought that applying might be an option, so I just sent a speculative application. As it happened, the marketing department was looking for help with its trade fair, print media and website redesign work. These were also consistent areas of interest for me at the time. I’d only been there a month when we started work on the Agritechnica fair.
In what ways did you get involved in the preparation for the fair after such a short time?
I helped out in every job related to trade fair planning: consultation with the stand builders, working on entries for the trade fair catalogues and websites to make it easier to find keywords and products, internal coordination and design of the trade fair stand, the organization of the stand schedules, catering and accommodation.
You started at ERICH JAEGER as a working student. To what extent did you have the opportunity to contribute your own ideas and projects at the start?
This always worked really well. At any time I could come up with a new proposal. Sometimes it started as a fantasy and then developed into a project.
Did you have a permanent contact person you could turn to if you had issues or questions?
Of course, my main contact was my then supervisor, the head of department. However, I was in the thick of things in the company from the very first moment and was in touch with every department.
You just said that being in the marketing department put you in touch with all other departments. How did you find this dialog and the working atmosphere at ERICH JAEGER in general?
You have departments which you can work with much quicker and more easily, and you also have departments where obstacles need to be overcome. In general, I was well received everywhere. You have to build up relationships first, and that was definitely possible.
After your experience as a working student, you were hired on a permanent basis at ERICH JAEGER. Was that clear in advance or how did that come about?
It was actually pretty clear from the get-go. It just kept emerging from our conversations. There was respect and appreciation on both sides, and that's why we said we wanted to continue along a shared path.
How has your job developed since you became a permanent employee?
Well, I’ve carried on with many of the tasks I took on as a working student, of course. Due to the fact that I had significantly more time at my disposal, I could get more involved in the detail of managing projects. I could go deeper into them and do more things in parallel. There’s no doubt that this had a positive impact on quality, as I could get to grips with a particular issue more intensively. In total, the output generated by the marketing department increased quite a bit. I did that for three and a half years. Then there was the opportunity to switch to the sales team as a key account manager. I took the opportunity because I was looking for a new challenge. It was just great that I had the chance to take this step in my development.
So you also have the opportunity to develop further in other areas and move to other departments?
As long as the departments are reasonably well connected to each other and there are certain links between them, you always have the opportunity to develop without being tied to one specific department.
Things have changed for you in the last few months, haven’t they?
Exactly. In the sales team at that time, I was mainly responsible for the commercial vehicle sector and also looked after the UK market. In 2020, the idea of restructuring the sales department took hold. A reorganization of the customer structure has resulted in the establishment of a sales team that serves certain customer groups from the headquarters here in Friedberg as a counterpart to the sales representatives. I’m now the head of this "Inside Sales" department.
When you started out, did you set some goals that you wanted to achieve at the company? Did these work out?
My path has definitely taken one or two turns that I didn't see coming before. Of course, you have to bring a certain flexibility with you. Sometimes opportunities simply arise. Five or six years ago, I would never have thought that I would become head of the Inside Sales team. At that time, this department didn't even exist. My ambition has always been to develop myself. I want to enjoy my job and take the company forward. That has also proven to be true and it's nice to share this development with my colleagues.
With the colleagues from the subsidiary branches too?
Definitely. The nice thing is the international environment you get here. Even though we’re so big, you always have the opportunity to cut through and link up with colleagues from abroad, set up joint projects and to get to know each other on site.
What’s your advice for career starters who are interested in a career with the JAEGER Group?
Be open to new things. Think about which areas you’re interested in and try to get involved in them. There are always opportunities you can take. At the end of the day, there are an incredible number of opportunities here. There’s something for everyone, no question.