Faces, stories, teams and talents

Interview with Carina Haverstreng
  • Carina Haverstreng
  • Head of Business Administration and Operational Excellence in der Business Unit Healthcare
  • With FIEGE since 2008

HELLO MRS HAVERSTRENG, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF first.

My name is Carina Haverstreng (36 years old), I am married and have a little daughter. In the meantime I have been working for FIEGE for 12 years. I started in 2008 as an executive assistant. For me, this was the optimal entry at the time, as I did not yet know which career direction I would like to pursue in the future. But FIEGE managed to light a fire in me relatively quickly.

WHAT AREA ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?

I quickly became enthusiastic about the healthcare industry and the high quality aspect. After about two years, I switched to sales for this area.

Another three years later, an independent branch management position was to be established for the location in Münster. If I’m honest, I had set my eyes on exactly this goal in 2010 and thus threw my name into the ring. In fact, they put their trust in me and made me site manager at the age of 29. That was fantastic! As a branch manager at FIEGE, you are virtually “independent” and have a lot of freedom. It was a lot of fun because on the one hand I was able to live out my sales affinity and on the other hand I was able to discover other fields that I am passionate about. This includes recruiting, for example.

WHAT CAME NEXT FOR YOU?

In 2018 I became a mother and went on parental leave for a year. When I rejoined part-time, FIEGE entrusted me with a position with even more responsibility and scope than before. Since then I have been working as Head of Business Administration and Operational Excellence in our business unit. Specifically, I am responsible for the specialist areas of Controlling, HR, IT and Lean Management.

HOW HAS FIEGE SUPPORTED YOU ON YOUR CAREER PATH?

An important building block of my career is that I have always had great supervisors, who I have always seen as mentors.

I was supported by various colleagues not only in my professional development, but also in my personal development. Now I have been working very intensively with my current supervisor since 2011. He has also had a positive influence on my career path, for example by valuing my advice at eye level from the very beginning.

HOW DOES A DAILY WORKDAY LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?

I can say up front that my working day offers a lot of variety. Sometimes I prepare for negotiations, sometimes I delve deep into the financial figures of the last month with my colleagues. Sometimes I deal with other companies as part of a mergers & acquisitions opportunity, sometimes I discuss the right IT selection for a new customer deal. Basically, I exchange a lot with my team. The nice thing about my job is that I have a large intersection of specialist departments and can develop great things together with my colleagues there. But that’s also part of my daily routine: Yesterday it was my turn to pick up my daughter from kindergarten at 3 pm and I spent the afternoon with her. In return, I had a virtual job interview with a potential candidate at 8:30 pm, as this time also suited him well. FIEGE makes it possible for me to live this work-life flow, which fits perfectly into my life.

WHAT VALUES ARE IMPORTANT TO YOU AS A MANAGER?

Personally, it is important for me to be there for my team. I try not to lead so closely and to let my colleagues do what feels right. It is important to me to give them space and to be there for them when they need me. I am always happy to be available to my colleagues as a mentor/coach or sparring partner and I think that is also the great added value they see in me.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE WORKING ATMOSPHERE AT FIEGE?

The working atmosphere here is characterised by many people who want to. That has its origins in the way we recruit: It never really depends on what grade the applicant has on their certificate, but whether they want it. Accordingly, there are a lot of people at FIEGE who do not think within limits, but beyond them. There is an incredible number of solution-oriented people and it is fun that you are allowed to be courageous and do not come up against hard fronts. Furthermore, it motivates me to see this business unit grow and to be able to help with it. I’m happy that colleagues who I hired as interns in the beginning have now taken on a managerial position with us.

HOW DO YOU MANAGE TO BALANCE YOUR PRIVATE AND PROFESSIONAL LIFE SO WELL?

Actually, it’s a special art, since the grandparents don’t live nearby. How do I manage? With a daughter who loves to go to kindergarten and play with other children, which allows me to work with a good feeling. My husband and I share the time with our daughter equally, as we both work. We look at our professions as equals and, for example, in case of illness, see who can best integrate the care of our daughter into the day in that case. I also succeed because I have a great private environment. I’m thinking, for example, of a great neighbour who always steps in when things get tight. Nevertheless, I like to take two afternoons off a week to spend time with my daughter. Especially after my first year of parental leave, I had to learn how efficient you become when you don’t work full time.

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR YOUNG PEOPLE STARTING OUT IN THEIR CAREERS?

I have to admit that after my business studies with a focus on languages, I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do with it. That’s why I decided to take a trainee or executive assistant position. At first, I drove myself a little crazy with it. That’s one point I want to emphasise: I only discovered my passion for my profession when I started working. It’s okay to find your way later.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE FIEGE IN ONE WORD?

Movement. I think FIEGE is always in motion and something new is always happening. In the end, we also set everything in motion, for example by organising flows of goods and information. That’s why you find this dynamic on several levels.