Technology Controlling expert
My name is Timo, I am 24 and I studied Business Administration with a focus on finance and strategy at Würzburg Technical University. During my degree course, I also completed a semester in the U.S. and a practical semester with an automotive supplier in controlling. I have been working as an expert in Technology Controlling at LEONI since July 2021.
What does a typical working day as a Technology Controlling expert look like?
Start of the day
At LEONI, I work from home 2-3 days a week, so I don't have the usual journey to work every day. This means that although my home is almost an hour away from Kitzingen, LEONI is still an attractive employer for me. I usually get up at around 6:15 a.m. When I work from home, I open my laptop at around 6:30 a.m., on office days at about 7:30 a.m. I don't have to worry if it’s earlier or later on some days: we work using a combination of flexitime and trust-based working time, and so I don't have to be at my desk at 8:00 sharp. I like to organize my time productively: on office days I enjoy listening to podcasts or book summaries, which helps me to get ready for the workday.
Once I’ve arrived at the office, I first set up my workplace, I try to plan my day's work as efficiently as possible and reply to unread emails. I like to use the quiet time in the early morning to tackle large tasks, such as evaluations for the management team or coordinating budget and actual figures.
In Technology Controlling, we have a fixed day twice a week on site in Kitzingen, a good opportunity for us as a team to get together. Here we discuss how far we have gotten with our tasks, what tasks are upcoming and topics of a general nature. On the other days I like to use the mornings to work through miscellaneous tasks on my ever-growing to-do list. It is difficult to be specific here: very few tasks are actually like any previous one. Generally speaking, my jobs within the technology area are quantitative support through budget/actual evaluations, coordinating internal cost allocation and hourly rates, calculating target costs, validating investment applications and managing all risks and opportunities in my second role as risk coordinator.
Depending on the schedule, we usually go to the company canteen between 12 noon and 1:00 p.m., where we all switch off for a bit and also talk about personal matters, a nice time out in the working day.
In the afternoon, I usually have appointments with the responsible management area of series development where I present up-to-date figures, provide information about news and where I am being brought up to date. Afternoons are best for this: in our international organization I also coordinate regularly with our sites in the U.S., China, and other countries. For example, the time difference between us and our Mexican colleagues is up to 9 hours. Here in Controlling we are responsible for everything relating to figures, data, and facts, so we often get a call through MS Teams with ad hoc enquiries.
Usually, my work finishes after about 9 hours, including a break of between 30 and 45 minutes and occasional additional work. On Fridays I like to start my weekend early. The overtime I have accrued makes this possible. Exercise is very important to me as a recreational activity: on office days, I try to get my training done straight after work. The gym is very handy here as it is only a 200-meter walk from LEONI. When I work from home, I have a bigger time window for leisure activities even though my average working day is 8 hours long. I go to soccer practice two to three times a week, spend the afternoon with friends or take my motorbike for a spin: all no problem. If I end up working late one evening, I don't mind too much: thanks to flexitime and trust-based working time I can start a bit later the next day and reduce the overtime I have accrued.
Why did you opt for LEONI as your employer?
After my degree, I chose LEONI because I have a great interest in the automotive industry as a whole. It is one of Germany’s most important sectors of industry and a real draft horse here in southern Germany, in particular. I am also attracted to the idea of being involved with the global players and major brands in the sector. What do I appreciate particularly about LEONI? Our intercultural way of working together, our modern working conditions – such as flexitime, the right to mobile working and the open working spaces – and the trust I was given from Day 1 despite my young age.
What do you love about your job?
It is so exciting for me to have a direct impact on the performance of the international technology area through my work at LEONI, for example in series production or in project management. Although working with numbers is often abstract, I always feel that there is “meaning” to it, for example, if the success of a project becomes measurable or I can quantify experiences. And, as a Technology employee I am part of tomorrow’s innovations that we design for our customers today. This makes me proud.
What has been your best / most exciting moment at LEONI to date?
It is difficult to pick out just one moment: every day I face varied and exciting tasks that advance, challenge, and fulfil me. But I have a very positive fundamental feeling, perhaps I could use that instead of the “moment” referred to in the question: It is always nice to see how the work my team does improves the organization in a tangible way!
What three words would you use to describe LEONI briefly and succinctly?