Company & Culture - Jul 25, 2022

Ready for the wide world of IT? Become Public Sector Head of Sales with the right mentor.

He never would have thought it, but his job is now making Hesse ready for the future: Stephan Moll is Head of Public Sector Sales at Bechtle Darmstadt, heading up a team of eight people and holding the reins of collaboration with public customers in west-central Germany. When he joined Bechtle in 2018, he hadn’t the faintest bit of IT expertise—instead, he had a special co-worker at his side from day one.

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“I was given a huge opportunity,” says Stephan, reflecting on how he came into the Bechtle family. He applied in 2018 without any IT knowledge, after many twists and turns. “After I graduated from school, I did what virtually everyone in my family does—I started vocational training in industrial purchasing. After that, I decided to study political and social sciences, simply because it interested me. I wasn’t thinking about career opportunities,” says the 34-year-old.

After completing this Master’s degree, chance let him to an SME that was in the middle of restructuring their public sector unit. “I found it really interesting, but it wasn’t the right company,” he says. When he subsequently discovered a vacancy as Public Sector Account Manager at Bechtle, he began thinking that this could really be something for him. Especially since “my dad works in IT and has known Bechtle since its inception—so I’d heard a lot of good things about them from him.”

Mentoring for career jumpers.

As a career jumper in a new job, Stephan wanted to learn as much as possible. A wish that did not fall on deaf ears. “I was lucky enough to have an experienced colleague at my side, who had been working at Bechtle for 26 years at that point! For the first year, I was given time to get into the role and ask all of the “stupid” questions I could think of,” says Stephan.

His biggest takeaways? “I learnt that it’s crucial for a successful account manager to really get to know the technical side of things. And for my leadership role, I’ve come to know how valuable it is to have patience and to be responsive to each individual’s needs. We’re all different, after all. And that’s what makes us work together as a team.”

Tangible team spirit.

Without his mentor, Stephan thinks his path could have gone a different way. “The whole onboarding and mentoring experience was wonderful and I’m really grateful for it,” he says. From junior to leader. From a mentee to his former mentor’s boss. The new role felt unfamiliar at first, but the trusting relationship has never changed. And Stephan is still learning from his mentor. It’s just that now the learning goes in both directions.

A further building block for Stephan’s rise to success was Bechtle’s JuMP leadership development programme that comprehensively prepares staff for upcoming leadership roles. Training courses from the Bechtle Academy also helped him make great personal and professional strides. Above all, though, Stephan is grateful for the tangible team spirit he and his colleagues share. “From team members and other sales staff right up to the managing directors, we value each other and are there for each other. And that’s really something to cherish,” he says.

Public sector – A not-so-typical clientele.

Stephan is a modest man who is also proud of his job. He sees the public sector as a special customer base. “You can really achieve a lot here and it’s also a very stable sector. The digitalisation of Germany’s society and organisation is a huge stepping stone towards the future that we’ll be working with for a long time to come.”

A further plus point is the close contact to customers that’s “a little different” to traditional sales. “We have to dive in deep to properly understand a customer’s need—and even before we’ve won a tender. It’s a complex, highly regulated process that can sometimes be a real challenge—but is always very exciting,” he tells us.

Open, dedicated, honest.

When asked about his goals for the future, Stephan has an answer ready to go. A sabbatical for some extended travel and more time to play football are on his wishlist. But most of all he just want to achieve something major at Bechtle Darmstadt. “Within five years from now, I want us to be in the top five most successful Bechtle IT systems houses in Public Business. He grins as he says it. Five years ago, he would have laughed it off if someone had told him he would be saying that today.

Stephan’s advice to anyone who’s not sure which is the right career path for them: “Be open to new things, commit yourself, and always be sincere. Do that and you too can be a career jumper!” 

“I was given a huge opportunity,” says Stephan, reflecting on how he came into the Bechtle family. He applied in 2018 without any IT knowledge, after many twists and turns. “After I graduated from school, I did what virtually everyone in my family does—I started vocational training in industrial purchasing. After that, I decided to study political and social sciences, simply because it interested me. I wasn’t thinking about career opportunities,” says the 34-year-old.

After completing this Master’s degree, chance let him to an SME that was in the middle of restructuring their public sector unit. “I found it really interesting, but it wasn’t the right company,” he says. When he subsequently discovered a vacancy as Public Sector Account Manager at Bechtle, he began thinking that this could really be something for him. Especially since “my dad works in IT and has known Bechtle since its inception—so I’d heard a lot of good things about them from him.”

Mentoring for career jumpers.

As a career jumper in a new job, Stephan wanted to learn as much as possible. A wish that did not fall on deaf ears. “I was lucky enough to have an experienced colleague at my side, who had been working at Bechtle for 26 years at that point! For the first year, I was given time to get into the role and ask all of the “stupid” questions I could think of,” says Stephan.

His biggest takeaways? “I learnt that it’s crucial for a successful account manager to really get to know the technical side of things. And for my leadership role, I’ve come to know how valuable it is to have patience and to be responsive to each individual’s needs. We’re all different, after all. And that’s what makes us work together as a team.”

Tangible team spirit.

Without his mentor, Stephan thinks his path could have gone a different way. “The whole onboarding and mentoring experience was wonderful and I’m really grateful for it,” he says. From junior to leader. From a mentee to his former mentor’s boss. The new role felt unfamiliar at first, but the trusting relationship has never changed. And Stephan is still learning from his mentor. It’s just that now the learning goes in both directions.

A further building block for Stephan’s rise to success was Bechtle’s JuMP leadership development programme that comprehensively prepares staff for upcoming leadership roles. Training courses from the Bechtle Academy also helped him make great personal and professional strides. Above all, though, Stephan is grateful for the tangible team spirit he and his colleagues share. “From team members and other sales staff right up to the managing directors, we value each other and are there for each other. And that’s really something to cherish,” he says.

Public sector – A not-so-typical clientele.

Stephan is a modest man who is also proud of his job. He sees the public sector as a special customer base. “You can really achieve a lot here and it’s also a very stable sector. The digitalisation of Germany’s society and organisation is a huge stepping stone towards the future that we’ll be working with for a long time to come.”

A further plus point is the close contact to customers that’s “a little different” to traditional sales. “We have to dive in deep to properly understand a customer’s need—and even before we’ve won a tender. It’s a complex, highly regulated process that can sometimes be a real challenge—but is always very exciting,” he tells us.

Open, dedicated, honest.

When asked about his goals for the future, Stephan has an answer ready to go. A sabbatical for some extended travel and more time to play football are on his wishlist. But most of all he just want to achieve something major at Bechtle Darmstadt. “Within five years from now, I want us to be in the top five most successful Bechtle IT systems houses in Public Business. He grins as he says it. Five years ago, he would have laughed it off if someone had told him he would be saying that today.

Stephan’s advice to anyone who’s not sure which is the right career path for them: “Be open to new things, commit yourself, and always be sincere. Do that and you too can be a career jumper!” 

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This post was published on Jul 25, 2022.