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1 year of joint management

At the start of July, Ute and Gaby Schilling celebrated their first anniversary as joint managing directors. We thought we'd take this opportunity to take a brief look back with an interview.

Dear Ute and Gaby,
How did the first year of sole management go for you?

We can look back on a successful first year. We were able to record good sales figures and have continued to run the company without any major upheavals. We were already familiar with the processes as we had already worked in our family business for several years. During a four-year transition phase, we were already members of the management team. We gradually got to grips with our roles and were able to take on responsibility early on.


How did spending time with your father in the management team affect you?

Working with our father taught us the importance of having clear structures and processes in place. That was always very important to him. We've made this a clear priority in our company management.


What was the most important thing you learned from your father?

He taught us to make decisions quickly and promptly. It's not always easy, but it's important to have a clear path so we can move forward together.

Another thing he taught us is to appreciate and take responsibility for our employees. They're our company's most important asset. 


Do you have any special memories of working with your father?

We have some great memories of our fixed monthly meeting, which we always made time for. Each of us reported on the current status from our own perspective, we set priorities together and worked out solutions. Those were always very constructive and enriching hours.


Looking back, how do you view the successful handover of the company?

From today's perspective, we are really grateful for the trust that our father placed in us. He recognised and encouraged our abilities, which enabled him to let go and gradually hand over the management tasks completely. 

We are also grateful to our employees for never giving us the feeling that we were just "the boss's children". It's only by recognising our achievements and skills that we've been able to make some big changes, like digitising our processes. We know that our employees are our company's most important asset. We're always aware of our responsibility and the need to show our appreciation. That's why our doors are open to everyone and we're happy to help with any concerns.


What have you been able to celebrate since taking over the management?

We're especially proud of setting up an employee committee, where we regularly discuss employee concerns. The elected reps also get a better understanding of the company and the complex relationships within it.


How do you find a healthy work-life balance?

We love cooking at home with our family, including fine dining. Music is also a great way for us to unwind and recharge. For instance, we're active in the choir and as organists in church services.