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Interview with Daniel van der Linde
  • Daniel van der Linde
  • site manager
  • with FIEGE in Otzberg since 2009

MR VAN DER LINDE, WHICH PROFESSION DID YOU LEARN?

I initially trained as a restaurant expert. After that, I joined the Bundeswehr for eight years. I then trained to become a warehousing and logistics expert at FIEGE at the Lahr branch in the Black Forest.

AFTER YOUR FIRST TRAINING DID YOU WORK IN THAT AREA OR WAS YOUR TRAINING FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY DOING YOUR MILITARY SERVICE WITH THE BUNDESWEHR?

I worked for six months as a restaurant expert and then did my mandatory military service. It was extremely interesting, and I enjoyed it so much that I joined full-time for a few extra years.

TODAY YOU ARE A SITE MANAGER. WHAT EXACTLY DO YOU DO IN THIS POSITION?

My principal job is to manage the warehouse or the site. Our headcount currently includes 31 fixed-term employees, one trainee, and between ten and 20 agency workers. That number varies according to season.

FIEGE IS DIVIDED INTO BUSINESS UNITS. WHICH ONE DOES YOUR UNIT HERE IN OTZBERG SERVE?

We handle tire logistics. At this location a Finnish tire maker contracted us to store their tires and handle their distribution.

SO YOUR TEAM HANDLES THE PRODUCTS OF AND STORAGE FOR TIRE MAKERS?

Precisely. We store the tires properly until called off, and the manufacturer tells us which end customer ordered how many tires. At times we even organise the transportation to the customer.

THE MANUFACTURER ORGANISES THE DISTRIBUTION AND YOUR DEPARTMENT RECEIVES INFORMATION ABOUT THE WHERE-TO AND TAKES CARE OF THINGS?

That’s correct.

HOW DID YOU GET TO JOIN FIEGE?

I spotted a FIEGE vacancy ad in the newspaper. I was looking for a new direction after my time in the military. I then decided to go into logistics because I had previous contact with that field. FIEGE then facilitated my two-year training as a warehouse logistics specialist. And since then, I never let go of FIEGE again.

IF YOU WERE TO SPONTANEOUSLY NAME A WORD THAT DESCRIBES FIEGE, WHICH WORD WOULD THAT BE?

Giving opportunities! FIEGE offers many, many different paths and gives you great opportunities to unfold your personal but also your professional potential.

WHY IS FIEGE A GOOD MATCH FOR YOU?

Because the structures are not as rigid as is maybe the case for a large group. FIEGE is a family business, in the positive sense of the word. You can see that, for example, also by the friendly relationship with superiors. Jens Fiege pops in every now and then, to get a picture of what is going on at his own sites. As an employee, I greatly value that.

WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD, WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE?

A difficult question. I think like any child that would be something along the lines of a fire fighter.

WHAT DO YOU APPRECIATE ABOUT YOUR COLLEAGUES?

Here, too, the warm and friendly contact is very important to me. We advocate a very informal communication on the managerial levels here at the branch and I specifically appreciate that we are all there for one another.

IF AN ACQUAINTANCE ASKED YOU: “DANIEL, THERE IS AN OPENING AT FIEGE. WHAT DO YOU THINK, SHOULD I APPLY FOR THAT?” WHAT WOULD YOU TELL HIM OR HER?

I would say to that: Straight away!

DO YOU CONSIDER YOUR WORK AT FIEGE EXCITING?

Absolutely. I think every day is exciting because every day is different, and you can never fully prepare for everything. There are so many things to experience each day, and so many key areas that are very different from each other. That’s what I like about my work. In any case, it is never monotonous.

TIME AND AGAIN A POSITIVE CHALLENGE, YES?

Yes, sometimes. If the challenges are of the negative kind, we strive to turn them into something positive.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DON’T FEEL LIKE WORKING ON A GIVEN DAY BECAUSE YOUR MOTIVATION IS LACKING? WHAT DOES FIEGE GIVE YOU TO MOTIVATE YOURSELF AGAIN?

Personally, I have not had that experience yet, where I said to myself: “I don’t want to go to work today.”

NOT IN ALMOST TEN YEARS?

No, not in the almost ten years that I’ve been here. Even the superiors, they all have a sympathetic ear. If ever there are problems somewhere, help is at hand so that conflicts are quickly squashed.

FIEGE offers many, many different paths and gives you great opportunities to unfold your personal but also your professional potential.

WHAT DO YOU DO TO BALANCE YOUR WORKING LIFE? DO YOU NEED TO STRIKE A BALANCE?

Everyone needs a balance. I enjoy travelling. I tend to go on cycling or hiking holidays. My children also help me unwind.

HOW OLD ARE THE TWO?

My daughter is seven, and my son is 14 years old.

ARE THERE DESTINATIONS THAT YOU WOULD STILL LIKE TO DISCOVER?

For sure. A tour of the USA would be great. Australia is also quite appealing to me.