“Love and chance brought me to United Planet”
Hello Katrin, what brought you to United Planet and what do you do here?
What brought me to United Planet? Love and chance. First, my partnership brought me to Freiburg, and then by chance, I stumbled across United Planet. And then, I soon fell in love with United Planet: Even after the first conversation – with Axel Wessendorf then – I felt that this company was different than the others. The team, the atmosphere, the product, the philosophy…it all just fitted from the start. That’s why I made a really quick decision to join United Planet and have been here since January 2012. In the meantime, I’m managing director and lead the company together with Manfred Stetz.
After experiencing for myself how important it is to have the right team and philosophy, I put a lot of emphasis on these. Even though a lot is changing and quickly in the fast-paced IT sector and we at United Planet have changed a lot in recent years, I am convinced that only motivated people can achieve something special. With Intrexx and United Planet, we have something special, whose core we cannot allow to change, even when a lot changes in processes, structures, customers, etc.
... and when you’re not busy taking care of the company’s economic success?
I may not be a “digital native” but I really enjoy working digitally. Nevertheless, I need a change of scenery now and again. That’s why my hobbies are more analog to complement my everyday work, so to speak. I play badminton and handball regularly to balance out the constant sitting and to clear my head.
On holiday, I’m often drawn to nature. We recently bought ourselves a camping bus for this reason. But it doesn’t always have to be in the South with a lot of sun and perfect beaches. I get much more excited by the raw landscapes of Scandinavia, Ireland, Scotland, etc. And it also doesn’t have to be the classic campsite with small plots separated by fences and garden gnomes. I prefer waking up and the first thing I see is a forest, fields, the sea, mountains, etc. For me, that’s relaxation at first sight.
The best part is that I can now take my holiday with a clear conscience. Just a few years ago, it wasn’t so easy to drive to the middle of nowhere and relax – I never knew what would be waiting for me after my holiday. Now I have my “digital workplace” with me and yes, I withdraw for an hour or so every day to work. That way, I can enjoy the remaining hours and really relax.
How do you assess the current market development – which areas are in the starting blocks and how will the IT world change in the midterm?
I’m starting to feel like a broken record but I have to say it again: Digitalization is not in the early stages of development but will significantly change the world of work for all of us. And I’m not just talking about the IT world but the whole business world. You can recognize this by looking at which companies – who originally had absolutely nothing to do with IT – were at CeBIT this year. And also by looking at which new, digital business models are developing. Nonetheless, it will still take years until the digital workplace has found its place across the board.
As well as this, Alexa, Cortana, etc. show us something that Star Trek led the way on centuries ago. And this will find its way into our everyday working: controlling the day-to-day office using speech recognition technology. It will probably not take too long until, for example, meetings are no longer recorded by hand but our digital assistants will take notes and automatically log the important decisions and to-dos. Naturally, with a reminder function ;)