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“When I was a boy, I once sold these little home-made cinnamon cakes, and I learned a lesson for professional life: If you want to do good business, you need a good promoter. In my case, in those days, that was my little dog. With a funny outfit on, he made for great sales.”
I started in sales in 2009. ThyssenKrupp had just obtained the license for direct sales in Vietnam. The sales department was still in its infancy: The “North” team was made up of me and one colleague fresh from university. We had hardly any sales channels. So we opened up the market bit by bit, and systematically expanded our structures. And it was a success: Today we’re a highly professional sales team, and ThyssenKrupp Elevator is number 2 on the Vietnamese market. We’ve built something great over the years, and I’m proud.
Our production system is multinational. That means I work together with plants all over the world. And each one works in accordance with its own laws: Work practices and cultures vary, and so do regional standards. This is often a big challenge, especially as my clients are usually multinational. The world’s getting smaller, while the competition increases. You face challenges every day – but that’s what makes it interesting.
I start my day by checking my emails: Is there anything urgent that has to be done right away? Then I talk to my colleagues over a cup of coffee about what we’ll do that day. It’s my job to lead and support the sales team. This also means exchanging information with my colleagues in production and other departments. Successful coordination is crucial in sales. I also keep up contact with my clients, and meet them time and again for talks and meetings.
That we can only achieve something together, for example, establishing a contract with a major client. That’s only possible if I can completely and totally count on my sales colleagues and contacts during the acquisition phase. If a contract is concluded, it’s practically our team’s promise to deliver first-class product and service quality. And that only works if all our departments pull together.
At thyssenKrupp, we all have the same aim: We want our clients to be completely satisfied in every way. We work hard for that, and communication plays an important role here. It’s important that we stay in communication with one another, both within the team and beyond it. That’s why I think it’s great that we have a break room in our office where we can meet and not just eat together, but also talk – in a relaxed setting and always with a joke.