Marie Wiethase speaks briskly and clearly, the 26-year old describes her career to date with ease and self-confidence. She is equally clear on where she wants her career to go. In an ideal world, it would be there already. It’s not unusual for her to get ahead of herself and that’s particularly true since she joined Bechtle, although the IT company wasn’t the first rung on her career ladder.
After completing her training as an office management assistant, Marie worked at an SME in the steel and tool industry. As it became clear that there were very few opportunities to grow, she started a dual-study programme in business administration and business psychology while keeping an eye out for other interesting industries to work in. In the end, she chose IT and Bechtle. She joined Bechtle Hanover as a trainee working in sales. She remembers her move into the “big Bechtle world” as she calls it, as if it were yesterday.
Together with some 150 colleagues from various Bechtle locations in Germany Austria and Switzerland, she attended the two-day Mikado onboarding event for new employees at the headquarters in Neckarsulm. How was it? I don’t think “impressive” does it justice. “It was crazy. A completely different world. But at the same time, it felt like we were a family,” says Marie. One example she gives is the Q&A session with the Executive Board, who she describes as being “laid back and personable.” “I also immediately fell in love with the wonderful garden and the Bechtle bees. It’s all so homely and warm and the complete opposite to what I had expected when looking from the outside in,” she explains.
This feeling of warmth followed her back to Bechtle Hanover where she joined her 150 colleagues—the perfect foundation to find her feet, get her hands dirty and contribute. Marie was responsible for acquiring new customers, worked intensively in sales-related projects and, while still a trainee, was even entrusted with her own customers. “The whole time I knew I could approach my supervisor or colleagues if I needed any help or support. Our team is characterised by open and honest interaction,” says Marie.
As an account manager, today Marie supports the needs of some 60 customers with the help of internal sales. There’s never a dull day in her job and she is always full of beans. And when a customer call doesn’t go as planned? “You have to learn from it,” she says. The deadline for handing in her Bachelor thesis is creeping ever-closer, but Marie is already thinking beyond that about starting a Master’s in IT management and joining the Bechtle consulting programme.
You’d be forgiven for thinking she was an overachiever, but she knows that her zeal isn’t always beneficial. “It’s important to press pause sometimes and reflect on your own behaviour. Especially when you have a lot to do with other people, like I do. This is something I’m going to do more of in the future,” says Marie.
This valuable insight was gained in equestrianism with her horse being her passion since her childhood. When it comes to riding, you have to know that “the horse mirrors the rider. If I’m stressed or unhappy, there’s no point getting in the saddle,” she says. The same is true of customers. “When my conversation partner reacts in a certain way, that’s on me and this is where I can still learn something about myself.”
When asked where she sees herself in five years, Marie doesn’t have to think very long before giving a surprisingly pragmatic answer. “I want to be having fun and healthy,” she says with complete conviction, adding, “Working has some similarities with horse-riding. If the balance isn’t right, you should take step back.”