What is your job at ERGO?
“I am Sales Director for VD West within EBV. Let me walk you through my job in numbers: I am leading 13 regional directors with approx. 1,250 agencies/sales partners and several administrative functions.
I am also responsible for around €96m in new business (2021) and the entire management of this organizational unit. My area of responsibility also extends to the "hybrid customer" as well as to product control of Legal Protection and Casualty in the sales department.”
How did you start your career?
“I graduated from my studies in Business Administration in 1988, and decided to work in management consultancy. In 1992, I left consultancy to become an independent financial broker and moved to Erlangen.
I’ve been working in the ERGO Group since March 1998. Until recently, I was head of various departments at ERGO Direkt, including Direct Sales, Call Centres and Operations. In addition, I headed and supported various major projects during my time at ERGO, for example "Hybrid customer” and "Merger Life". In June last year I applied successfully for my current position as Sales Director at VD West.”
What is your motto?
“Don’t ask why it won’t work, but how it could work.”
What do you particularly enjoy about management?
“Seeing how people and teams can develop and thrive if they are encouraged and allowed to. How a spirit of working "for one another" instead of "with one another" can develop within a team, making it even more successful. I am also especially proud when we meet particular challenges as a team!”
What three measures does ERGO need to introduce in order to get women into management positions?
“1. Don’t just get women into the positions, but continue to support them once they are there. Because you’re often a "rara avis" in the "new" position, and you are not always automatically accepted from the start as an equal.
2. Give less recognition to a person’s personality and demeanour, and perhaps more to successes that are sometimes achieved "silently". I have seen this happen many times.
3. Teach women to market themselves better, in line with point 2.”
What is the best career decision you have ever made?
“The same one many times over: deciding to try out and learn something new, when taking on different areas of responsibility. This stops you reaching burn-out after a few years and gives you a much better meta-perspective. It makes it impossible to lose yourself in operational details, allowing you to focus on your actual task of "managing".”