How has the Covid-19 pandemic impacted your professional and personal life?
We all have seen the world change as a result of the global Corona crisis. On the business side it is more about the virtual engagements, hybrid meetings and working from home. On the personal side it is more about reduced social contact, less traveling, lots of testing and the challenges of online schooling. So let us all hope for a more relaxed autumn.
Were you able to identify any positive side effects or opportunities resulting from the present situation?
We have become more tolerant towards the usual interruptions in our virtual engagements, e.g to pick up deliveries or our kids joining video calls. Besides, we are more efficient as we travel less, hence also work harder and thus need to assure the right work-life balance.
Do you have any habits or routines that help you maintain your work-life balance and work well for you?
I keep regular blockers in my schedule to work on “urgents” during the day and avoid catching up on hot topics only after regular working hours.
Besides I have three adorable kids, who always bring me back to the here and now and help me to park business concerns for the time being. Lastly I am running our dog regularly which helps me to restart with a fresh mind.
What advice would you give to your 20-something-year old self?
Pay less attention to the people that say it can’t be done, never listen to, “You can’t.” always listen to yourself and say, “Yes, you can.” But you can’t always win, and sometimes you need to change your plan… But you can’t be paralyzed by fear of failure or you will never push yourself. And lastly - if you want to be successful, you need to accept there is absolutely no way around hard work because you can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.
What are the parts of your work that still excite you and give you motivation?
Talent management gives me utmost satisfaction - to increase the competencies of our teams, giving them room to grow in their careers and to foster a culture of internal mobility. We just had a great graduation ceremony of our talent program, which will remain an everlasting memory to me.
If you had to make a career switch, in what other profession can you imagine yourself?
A long time ago I was quite impressed by a US case law TV series and I wanted to become a lawyer. However I have been working in IT & Telecommunications for the last 20 years and I still like it. Moving forward, perhaps I will be able focus more on general business consulting.
Can you name three sources you have recently learned from or have inspired you the most (e.g. people, books, websites...)?
“There is no end to education… The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning“, Jiddu Krishnamurti. This year I have engaged myself so far in the theory of constraints of Eliyahu M. Goldratt, the outward mindset model by The Arbinger Institute and scrum (scrum.org)
What is your biggest fear for the generation of your children? What about the biggest hope?
I am worried about the impact of climate change for my kids and at the same time I hope we will be able to focus our energy and efforts to mitigate the impact as much as possible.
What book do you gift or recommend the most often and why?
Just recently I have recommended “The Infinite Game“ by Simon Sinek, as I like the idea a lot that leaders with an infinite mindset can build stronger, more innovative, and more inspiring organizations, where their people trust each other and their leaders. MY “standard“ book recommendation is “The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement” by Eliyahu M. Goldratt.
Andreas Truls, Managing Director, Deutsche Telekom IT Solutions Slovakia, and AmCham Board member