Career - Dec 2, 2021

5 questions for Larissa Förster on careers for experts.

Larissa Förster works in the Bechtle AG’s central People Development department and is a specialist in leadership development. She is involved in numerous projects to offer employees opportunities to better develop their potential, which means she is constantly having the think outside the box. Her current focus is on new target groups and alternative career paths.

written by

Human Resources Communication

E-Mail: jana.kuehnel@bechtle.com

Larissa, you are a member of the central People Development team. Which topics keep you the most busy?

There are currently a few things, for example, we are working on a competency model for employees and leaders. The previous concept was quite substantial, which is why we have reduced the number of Basic Competencies to six. 

We are also continuously busying ourselves with the topic of gender diversity as we strive to promote gender equality at the company. To do so, we are working on a range of measures that we would like to implement next year both nationally and internationally. At the moment, though, most of my time is devoted to developing alternative development opportunities for highly-qualified Bechtle employees.

Why do you think staff need to be offered new career paths?

A new trend is gaining a foothold, not just at Bechtle, but in People Development in general, whereby a growing number of people appreciate the opportunity to develop without having to take on any responsibility for personnel. More people are increasingly looking to invest more time in expert knowledge, developing themselves professionally, making themselves stand out from the crowd and achieving recognition. On top of this, organisational structures are changing. Hierarchies are flattening and projects are increasingly being implemented using more agile methods, which means that the demand for experts is growing and we at Bechtle want to be able to meet that demand.

Are there already some specific plans in place for the next steps in terms of careers for experts?

We already have a basic concept and we’ll be putting that to the test this year in two companies. If the pilot proves to be a success, we will define initial roles and competency profiles, i.e. characteristics, skills, qualifications and experience required to be proficient in a particular position. From that, we’ll then be able to design new training courses for the employees.

What’s your advice to some who is torn between choosing a career as an expert or as a leader?

That depends on the person. The first thing to think about is what suits you best.

In a classic leadership role, a person not only needs to be an expert in their field, but also needs to be able to lead. In these positions, it’s no longer just about you. You now have real responsibility for others. You are a first point of contact, a coach and troubleshooter for the your team, plus you have to manage your own workload. Leaders have to juggle a lot and also help their employees to grow and develop.

As an expert, on the other hand, your focus is on one specific area and your aim is to expand and deepen your own skills. Experts tackle challenging, specialist topics, lead projects, act as consultants, acquire knowledge independently, identify trends and find solutions for complex problems. They are the oracles of their companies and sometimes even beyond.

Why do you think it is worth being a part of the Bechtle Group?

There are so many good reasons. One is that you you can accomplish great things at Bechtle, and the company supports everyone when they need it. We at Bechtle set great store in continued training as well as identifying and fostering personal and professional potential for development. Employees are given responsibility early on and are thus able to grow. There are also plenty of opportunities on offer that are constantly being expanded. You just have to seize them when they are offered.

Published on Dec 2, 2021.