Up Close & Personal
‘We have enormous potential here.’
Katharina Czepluch is confident: “employee and organizational development is what I do best.” And that’s what she does with passion at Bösch Boden Spies. Not only for managers, but for all employees. That’s her credo. In the interview she talks about a bestseller, the diverse team, and her important upcoming project.
Katharina Czepluch has acquired a taste for Bösch Boden Spies and its products. And her dream job too. The agile 35-year-old from Göttingen came to employee and organizational development via a circuitous route: after joining an agency as a PR consultant and later discovering her true professional passion.
For three years she has worked for us in employee and organizational development, continuing training, recruiting, and much more. With the support of a new colleague, she is currently taking our employee development work and strategy to a new level. At the same time, there is another important project: This spring, Katharina Czepluch will become a mother for the first time.
Ms. Czepluch, do you actually know everyone at Bösch Boden Spies?
Of course I know the name of everyone I meet in our corridors, in my job, and many more. But I’m not the only one who does: I think most of my colleagues could claim this – and we make every effort during the familiarization phase to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to do so.
Bösch Boden Spies employs people from a wide variety of backgrounds and cultures. Does such a heterogeneous team make work particularly difficult for personnel development managers?
Of course, the requirements are especially varied as a result of this. In my opinion, however, the tasks of a personnel development manager are more difficult if you have a homogeneous, grey mass and don’t know how to provide new impulses. We have enormous potential.
Your department also includes the suggestion box, known as the ‘Moin’ Box: How many suggestions for improvement do Bösch Boden Spies employees have?
An impressive number! And they differ greatly across all departments: from requests for incentives to process optimization through to sustainability and environmental topics. This also tells me what needs the employees have, what is “trending,” and also what no one is interested in right now.
Your goal is to have highly qualified and motivated employees. Which measures bring the most success?
If I had a patent recipe for that, I’d write a book, and it would be a guaranteed bestseller. Which measures work well differs from person to person and from one time of life to another. Most people want to be able to say “yes” to their company – this is important. Also, it shouldn’t be made too difficult for people to help shape and implement ideas. And there must be opportunities for development. Our growth constantly opens up new doors that have not yet been defined as a career level but that offer many opportunities.
You began your career in PR and moved to HR. Can you imagine going back to PR?
No. I spent a long time been searching for my vocation and have now found it – both in terms of my job and my company. Why would I do something that’s less enjoyable?
Before Bösch Boden Spies, you were an HR officer at a candy factory. You seem to have acquired a taste for the food industry.
You could say that! I wasn’t looking for HR jobs just in the food industry, but was delighted when I realized that I liked a company and its products as well. Food is something fundamental, and how can you say “yes” to something more clearly than to eat it? In fact, I’ve loved nuts and dried fruit since my earliest childhood. Even more than candy.
Which ingredient from the Bösch Boden Spies product range do you particularly like?
Actually, there are several: the trail mix from our conference rooms, because it’s just so diverse and contains lots of delicious components. The appeal likes in eating the right things in combination. So not just a cranberry, but a cranberry with an almond, or a walnut with a prune. And I keep discovering new ingredients in it.
In your personal life you and your partner like to load your bikes onto your VW bus, pack your yoga mats and a few good books, and set off – where to?
Anywhere you can get to by road. The year before last we were in Galicia, northern Spain: far away, but incredibly beautiful. Sardinia was one of the few destinations we visited twice – we just had to go back again. Last year we were in Norway, in the hottest Norwegian summer you can imagine. We even cycled a lot, which is quite a feat in Norway because it isn’t really bicycle country.
And soon you’ll be needing a child seat for your bike and car.
Exactly. Our baby arrives at the end of April, and we’re trying to make it clear to our child even before the birth that vacations in the bus are essential to life. Maybe our travel radius will be a little smaller, but vacations in the bus are a given.
Your child will probably turn your life upside-down. Do you think your experience from your job will help you with this very special personnel development?
Of course, I’m a bit “biased” from my training in coaching and the systemic approach. That’s bound to have an effect on our parenting. But the baby doesn’t need a development plan yet. On the other hand, I’m sure that it will enrich my job to experience human development first-hand, so to speak.
All the best for your baby project. Will you stay with Bösch Boden Spies after you become a mother?
Absolutely. I’ll be back!