People, who have worked with me, describe me as an empathetic and integrative leader. While having a strong drive for performance- people satisfaction and development have always been a priority of mine. For me, it was always important as a leader to be authentic in my style, which for me means to be myself, not playing a role. I apply the lowest possible level of hierarchy and foster delegation of decision-making power to the lowest possible organisational level. I always tried to have a strong connection with people in my teams to understand ideas, questions and concerns they had and at the same time be available to share and discuss my views.
My professional career allowed me to gain fascinating insights into cultures very different to the one in which I was raised. It was a great learning experience for me to spend several years in India and China to build business areas in these countries. Besides the fact that these years strongly shaped my ability to deal with different communication styles, I was exposed to diverse ways to approach and solve challenges.
Later in my career, I assumed responsibility for a global organisation. I was privileged to work with people from various different cultures. To be closely connected with people in my team I regularly travelled to our international offices. I am convinced that empathetic leadership requires regular physical interaction and communication with all parts of an organisation.