"I take pleasure in supporting my clients and try to develop a deep understanding of their situation in order to unlock potential."

Personal aspects

What dream would you like to fulfil?

To pack my rucksack and travel round the world for a year.

What is your motto?

“Mer läv nur einmol" – in English “You only live once”. This saying in Cologne dialect expresses a fundamental belief of mine that you should always try and make the best of what you’ve got and enjoy the moment.

What specialist book has inspired you recently?

“Wenn Sie wollen, nennen Sie es Führung“ by Cyrus Achouri. This book explores what leadership means in the 21st century. It creates a new image of an effective leader whose task consists of facilitating, integrating different perspectives, challenging and forging connections between people so that they can organise themselves in an intelligent way. It’s a fascinating read that calls into question the traditional picture of the ‘heroic’ leader on the basis of a systems theory approach and opens up new perspectives.

What book had a lasting influence on you?

“There is no reality except the one contained within us”. The quotation comes from Hermann Hesse's Demian. I was very inspired by Hesse’s books when I was young and believe that his ideas on searching for one’s own way and developing oneself still exert a strong influence on me in my current work.

What was your most memorable journey?

That was a backpacking tour of several weeks through Thailand and Australia. It was one of my dreams to see the opera house in Sydney and to be at the proverbial end of the world. It was a very moving moment.

What for you are the most important insights of systems theory?

1) The system is not susceptible to instruction. Each individual decides for himself at a training course what he will learn, what is relevant for him and what isn’t. I think seminars in which the top 10 do’s and don’ts of leadership are offered as a panacea are not effective. Seminars should offer a space for experience in which the participants can work on concrete solutions to their concrete cases and acquire methods that will help them to create solutions for themselves after the end of the course – without a trainer and definitely without the use of cure-alls.
2) Every system organises itself. For a leader nowadays, it is no longer a question of having all the answers to hand and being the helmsman in rough seas but more a case of organising the self-organisation of the team in such a way that the team can develop itself and take intelligent decisions together.

How can you tell if a training course was effective?

When I ask the participants to draw up their action plans at the end of a course and they are so engrossed in the activity that I notice that as a trainer I am completely superfluous at that moment.

What’s the most beautiful training venue you have been to?

Costa Rica. We were in a hotel outside of San Jose on a coffee plantation. The building looked like a hacienda in the colonial style and you really got the feeling of travelling back in time.

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